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J. C. , 





" Well ratified by law and heraldry." 

HAMI.ET, Act i. 



o ib* Piernorg of 






THE author has long been of opinion that the alleged 
" contempt of scutcheons " is not so universal as is 
usually represented, and that, even where the sentiment 
is expressed, it is frequently not very genuine. Many 
sounder hearts than Voltaire's, and many wiser heads 
than Lord Chesterfield's have reverenced, instead of 
ridiculing, the armorial traditions of Europe ; and in 
these days of crumbling Republics, the favourite theories 
of the Utilitarians are passing into wholesome obscurity. 
What is the use of it ? or, what is it worth ? are ques- 
tions which are not so universally asked as formerly ; 
and the principles of those heartless, short-sighted philo- 
sophers who would estimate everything under the sun 
according to its money value, seem to be gradually 
falling into disrepute. Under these hopeful circum- 
stances, and notwithstanding Professor Innes' friendly 
" Requiescat" the author has made a humble attempt 
to rescue the " Noble Science " from the " tender mercies 
of the lapidary and the coach-painter," at whose un- 
sparing hands it has certainly met with many painful 

viii PREFACE. 

A considerable portion of this volume was written, 
without a view to publication, several years ago, when 
its completion was unavoidably abandoned ; but the 
author was induced to resume his labours, and in con- 
sequence of the unexpected encouragement which he 
received, his manuscript has at length assumed its pre- 
sent shape. Various circumstances, over which he had 
no control, have retarded the appearance of the work, 
the preparation of which was more than once suspended 
for several months together ; and he may state, more- 
over, that he has gone much more fully into certain 
branches of the subject than was originally contemplated. 
On the whole, he has adhered pretty closely to the 
arrangement proposed in his prospectus. While he has 
thought it expedient to omit an intended chapter relative 
to armorial bearings as a source of revenue, he has intro- 
duced a pretty detailed account of Scottish Heraldry as 
illustrated by Seals, besides a chapter on the Royal Arms 
in Scotland, and other minor additions. He has also 
devoted a considerable amount of space to the subject of 
change of Surname, which has recently excited a good 
deal of public interest. Besides a comprehensive list 
of Contents, he has prepared a copious Index, which he 
ventures to hope will prove serviceable. 

In the selection of his examples, the author has always 
endeavoured to introduce the most apposite illustrations ; 
and if it should be considered that too much prominence 
has been given to certain surnames, he has merely to 
remark that, independently of his greater familiarity 
with the relative bearings, it so happens that the pages 


of both Mackenzie and Nisbet abound with references to 
the Heraldry of the Houses in question. 

He trusts that it is quite unnecessary for him to dis- 
claim any intention to cause offence in his strictures on 
what he considers to be heraldic irregularities ; for most 
of which, indeed, the Authorities of the Lyon Office are 
responsible, and not the families by whom these irregu- 
larities are exhibited. In his anxiety to avoid such a 
result, he at one time entertained the idea of resorting to 
what lawyers call the " A. B." system of illustration ; but 
he soon found that a hypothetical mode of treatment 
was not calculated to explain his views with sufficient 
clearness, and that the actual mention of names was 
desirable, if not absolutely necessary. 

With reference to the Dedication, the author thinks it 
light to state that, in accordance with the permission 
of the lamented Lord Eglinton, he hoped to have pub- 
lished the work under his Lordship's living patronage, 
but dis aliter visum. 

He embraces this opportunity of acknowledging the 
valuable assistance he has received during the progress 
of the work, more particularly from Lord Lindsay, Mr. 
David Laing, Mr. William Fraser of the Register House, 
and Mr. William Anderson of the Lyon Office. He 
also begs to express his great obligations to Mr. James 
Drurnmond, R.S.A., and Mr. Robert Frier, for their 
ready and skilful aid in the preparation of several of 
the illustrations. 

The author may state that his mode of treatment im- 
plies a knowledge of at least the elements of Heraldry ; 

-\ PilEFACE. 

and while lie lias endeavoured to show that the 
" Science " of Blazon is by no means devoid of in- 
terest, his chief aim has been to make the subject both 
instructive and popular, without giving undue promi- 
nence to those drier and less acceptable details which 
a treatise on the Law of Heraldry must necessarily 

EDINBURGH, IQth March 1863. 




Heraldry in its widest sense Definition of Armorial Bearings Their 
first general introduction Derivation of the term " Blazon" Plan- 
chtj's four conclusions on the subject of Armorial Ensigns Perma- 
nency of the " Noble Science '' of Heraldry Increasing interest in its 
study Its uses and advantages, particularly in Genealogical matters 
Illustrative cases Importance of Heraldry to the historical student 
Its symbolical character Unicorn, Dragon, Phoenix, etc. Arms of 
the City of Glasgow Heraldic allusions in Poetry and Romance 
Instances of a taste for Heraldic and Genealogical investigations 
Scott, Gibbon, Agnew, etc. Accuracy of ancient Blazon Mediaeval 
Seals of Arms Disuse of documentary Seals in Scotland at the end of 
the 16th century Modern Grants of Armorial Ensigns The bearing 
of Coat-Armour a matter of legal right Extracts from Mackenzie, 
Erskine, etc. Opinions of Scottish Judges, ..... 



Institution of Heralds Their various duties, including the regulation of 
Armorial Bearings Kings-of-Arms Heralds and Pursuivants of the 
Nobility English College of Heralds Office of Arms in Ireland 
Antiquity of the Scottish Lyon King-of-Arms His style, dignity, and 
ancient privileges Regalia and Official Coat of Arms Connexion with 
the Order of the Thistle Precedency Origin of the prefix "Lord" 
Devolution of the Lyon King's powers on the Lyon-Depute Lyon- 
Clerk, Procurator-Fiscal, and other officers of his Court Heralds and 
Pursuivants Negative duties of the former Robes of Heraldic- 
Officials Trumpeters Messengers-at-Arms Twofold jurisdiction of 
the Lyon King-of-Arms, ........... 23 




His ordinary jurisdiction before the middle of the 16th century Sir 
David Lindsay's Heraldic Register Earliest legislative enactment on 
the subject of Armorial Bearings, 1592, c. 125 Temporary extension 
of the Lyon's jurisdiction, 1662, c. 53 Confirmation of the Act of 
1592, and additional provisions respecting Armorial Bearings, 1672, c. 
21 Reservation of the Lord Lyon's authority in the Treaty of Union 
His jurisdiction sustained by the Court of Session Its nature and 
extent Perhaps formerly subject to the review of the Scottish Privy- 
Council Only privative in certain instances -Cases of Dundas and 
Macdonald in 1762 and 1826 Rare occurrence of Heraldic questions 
in the Supreme Court Analysis of the Statutes of 1592 and 1672 
Twofold classification of the Lieges Right to Armorial Bearings in- 
dependently of statutory pro vision Noblemen, Barons, and Gentlemen 
Prelates and Knights Definition of Barons and Gentlemen Mer- 
chants' marks Matriculation of Armorial Bearings Marks of Ca- 
dency Grants of Arms to "well-deserving persons" Civil nobility 
Armorial visitations in England Official extracts of Arms Penalties 
for their unlawful assumption Summary of the Lord Lyon's duties 
in Heraldic matters, . . . . . . . . .42 



Business chiefly ministerial Judicial procedure Duties of the Lyon- 
Depute Deposition by the interim Lyon-Depute in 1821 Irregu- 
larities in the practice of the Lyou Office Relative strictures by 
Arnot, Riddell, etc. Recent tendency to improvement, . . .62 

SECT. 1. Htatt of the Existing Register of Arms. 

Sir David Lindsay's Register, 1542 Its contents, arrangement, etc. 
Blank from middle of 16th century to 1672 Conjectured destruction 
of the Record Traditionary conflagration Official return of 1800 
Lyon Register from 1672 to present time Its incompleteness in con- 
sequence of neglected registration Other sources of Heraldic infor- 
mation Nisbet's laborious researches His nominal patronage by the 
Scottish Parliament Contents of the first volume of the Lyon 
Register Description of the subsequent volumes Beautiful execution 
of the later Illuminations and descriptive Blazonry Statutory pro- 
visions relative to Matriculation not strictly enforced Right to Arms 



jure untfcessorio Unrecorded Arms of ancient families - Unwarranted 
assumption of Armorial Bearings Lyon Register of Genealogies and 
Birth-Brieves Its imperfect character Record of Pedigrees in the 
English College of Arms Value and importance of such Registers 
Scottish family histories, 68 

SECT. 2. Mode of Differencing Cadets. 

Provision relative to " congruent differences " in Act of 1672 
Nisbet's Essay on Marks of Cadency Permanent additional figures 
Temporary Differences Opinions of Dugdale and Mackenzie 
Irregularities in Differencing Principal and additional charges 
Various modes of distinction Assumption of additional figures 
Chevron, Bordure, etc. Variation of their forms Label, Ribbon, 
and Bend Ordinaries charged with other figures Additional 
charge in centre of Shield Alteration of Tinctures Counterchanging 
Principal figures under accidental forms Coupiug and erasing 
Altered position of charges Increase and diminution Quartering of 
other Arms " Plain-quartered " Coats Arms of Heiresses Postpone- 
ment of paternal bearings ' ' Quartered" Coats " Quarterly quartered" 
Coats Inescutcheons Various modes of Marshalling Transposed 
Quarterings Genealogical Pennons Secondary object of Differences 
Commemoration of Alliances, Actions, and Employments Varied 
differences in the same family Arms of Superiors Abandonment of 
paternal bearings Similar Arms borne by different Surnames, and 
rice versd Armorial controversies in olden times Adoption of 
different Crests, 85 

SECT. 3. Grants and Matriculation*. 

Statutory provisions Qualifications of Grantees Modern Coats of Arms 
Lyon-Clerk's duties in connexion with applications for Arms Pre- 
sent form of procedure Composed Coats-Armorial Usurpation of 
Arms Imperfect evidence of descent Arms conferred in consequence 
of Matrimonial Alliances Patents and Extracts of Matriculations 
Various forms of Destination Grants to Heiresses English case of 
Stubs v. Stubs- Neglected Registrations Restored Arms- Amended 
Matriculations Exemplifications Substitution of Scottish for English 
Grant Simultaneous debasement of Heraldry and Architecture 
Modern perversions of the " Noble Science " Arms of the English 
family of Tetlow Modern British heroes Sir John Herschel Lord 
Macaulay Instances of questionable taste from Lyon Register 
Naval and Military Officers Civilians Commercial Coats Examples 
of appropriate Grants Coat designed by the poet Burns Shake- 
speare's familiarity with the " Noble Science" Tennyson's Heraldry 
Simplicity of ancient Blazon Adaptability of Heraldic devices, . 122 


SECT. 4. Fees and other Emolument*. \-\t-.\: 

Matriculation Kates authorized by Act of 1672 Table of Lyon Office 
Fees in 1760 Progressive increase of charges from 1804 to 1822 
Fees for Supporters Arbitrary rates and disregard of Heraldic 
rules Present scale of fees for Grants and Matriculations Birth- 
Brieves and Genealogies Extracts and Searches Fees on creation of 
British Peers, etc. Lord Lyon's fees on admission of Messengers-at- 
Arms At appointment of Heralds and Pursuivants Salary of Lord 
Lyon Ancient perquisites of Scottish Heralds Emoluments of Lyon- 
Depute and Lyon-Clerk Total average fees of Lord Lyon, Lyon- 
Depute, Lyon-Clerk, etc. Suggested substitution of Salaries for Fees 
Distinction as to rate of charges in case of Touchadam in 1776 
Families having right to Arms prior to 1672 Modern Grants of Arms 
Increase of fees justified by usage Fees in England and Ireland 
Present scale of fees not unreasonable, . . . . .154 

SECT. 5. Penalties for the Unlawful Assumption of Armorial 

Escheat of emblazoned goods and gear Fine or imprisonment Letters 
of Publication enjoined by Act of 1672 Messenger's relative "Charge" 
Irregularities of painters, engravers, etc. Nisbet's complaint on the 
subject Referred to in English Letters-Patent issued by Charles n. 
in 1682 "Procurers" of Arms Warrant by the Earl Marshal in 
1597 Prosecutions by the Lord Lyon Rare exercise of this power 
Outrageous usurpations of Armorial Bearings " Notices" by Lord 
Lyon in 1758, and subsequently Propriety of enforcing the statutory 
penalties Laxity of our practice in matters of Arms and Pedigree 
Punishment by Wheel and Sword Fictitious ancestry in modern 
Genealogical Works Falsehoods of Tombstones, . . . .174 



Laing's Descriptive Catalogue of Scottish Seals Seals the earliest and 
most authentic record of Arms Their vahie as illustrations of early 
Art Their Historical and Genealogical importance, . . .188 

SECT. I. The Shield. 

Seals of the Counts of Flanders, Louis vn. of France and John de Mont- 
gomerie Elements of Armory in 1 2th century Alteration of Figures 
by some families Introduction of Arms and Surnames into Scotland 



Seals of Alexander n. and m. Varied shape of SHIELD Heater shape 
Shield Couche Inelegant escutcheons of 16th and 17th centuries 
Seals of the De Quincis Earliest Armorial Seals of the Stewarts 
Other early Heraldic Seals Examples of Differences The Label 
The Bend The Bordure The Chevron Other marks of Difference 
Indication of Tincture by Lines Two or more Shields on the same 
Seal Shields Accoll6es Their rarity in Scotland Instances of Com- 
posed Arms Examples of Quartered Arms Dimidiation Entire 
Impalement Examples of that arrangement Wife's Arms sometimes 
in dexter side of Shield Anns of Husband and Wife on separate 
Seals Non-impalement of Husband's Arms by Married Women and 
Widows Holyrood Slabs Rare occiirrence of the Lozenge in Scot- 
land Examples in Sir David Lindsay's Register, etc. Early English 
instances Inescutcheons or Shields-Surtout, . . . . .190 

SECT. 2. The Crest, Motto, and relative Appendage*. 

Ancient use of CREST in battle Originally conferred by Royal Grant 
Irregularly assumed by Clergymen and Ladies Interdict by English 
Heralds Instances of Ladies bearing Crests in Lyon Register Their 
questionable use by Corporate Bodies English and Scottish ex- 
amples Limitation of Crests in Burgundy Early English examples 
of Crests Considered by some writers to be assumptive at pleasure 
Grant by Lyon King-of-Arms in 1631 Crests carried unchanged 
for several centuries Examples of changed Crests Two or more 
Crests very rare in Scotland Instance at Jedburgh Anomaly of 
two Crests over an Unquartered Shield Plumes of Feathers and Ani- 
mals' Heads Ancient Crests not associated with Escutcheons First 
appearance of the present Royal Crest of Scotland Earliest Heraldic 
Crests The WREATH Its supposed origin Substituted for the 
Cointise or Lady's Scarf Its usual tinctures and divisions Sir George 
Mackenzie's theory Early English and Scottish examples Curious 
arrangement at Bowden Church DUCAL CORONET and CHAPEAU 
Origin of the former Early instances of the Ducal Coronet Ex- 
amples of the Chapeau in 15th century Ducal Coronet formerly 
limited to Military Leaders and distinguished Knights Families bear- 
ing Ducal Coronets or Chapeaux Indiscriminate grants of these 
figures in the reign of Queen Elizabeth Existing regulations of the 

Earl Marshal CORONETS of the Nobility Warrant by Charles u. 

Early Scottish examples of Heraldic Coronets Their extensive use on 
the Continent Deceptive expedients in England First use of the 
HELMET as a Heraldic accessory Motive for its adoption in France 
Not originally distinctive of rank Existing forms Helmets in pro- 
file and closed Barred Helmet Full-faced, open Helmet of Knights 
and Baronets Early Heraldic Helmets Tendency to the round shape 



during loth century Examples of the full-faced Helmet Rarity 
of two or more Helmets in Scotland MANTLING or Lambrequin 
Derived from the Cointise Its proper tinctures Mantlings of the 
Nobility Royal Mantling Early examples of Mantling on Seals 
MOTTO or Dittoii Frequently placed above the Orest in Scotland 
Impresses of the 15th century Mottos seldom changed Of rare 
occurrence on Ancient Seals Early examples on Scottish Seals of 
13th century Earliest Heraldic Mottos Modern irregulai-ity War- 
cries or Slogans Confined in Scotland to Chiefs of Clans and Military 
leaders Examples of War-cries Names of leaders, and places of 
rendezvous The Fiery Cross Patron Saint Laconic Mottos Long 
and mysterious Legends Mottos referring to Escutcheon More fre- 
quently in allusion to Crest Expressive of sentiment and resolution 
BADGE or Cognizance Frequently confounded with Crest Mackenzie's ^ 
relative statement Sometimes confounded with the DEVICE Defini- 
tion of that term Difference between Badge and Device Examples 
of Devices Frets and Knots of English families Other examples 
of Badges Instances of Scottish Devices Doubtful examples Rarity 
of regular Badges in Scotland Modern Badges of the Highlanders, . 213 

SECT. 3. Supporters and Compartments. 

Origin of SUPPORTERS Cotised Shield Supports and Ten an s Varied 
position of Supporters The same figures common to several families 
Savages Supporters taken from figures in the Shield Lions and 
other animals Supporters allusive to bearer's Surname Frequently 
changed Examples of Shields supported by Angels Placed between 
two Lizards, etc., on early Seals On the breast of a displayed Eagle 
Seal of Muriel of Stratherne Examples of single Supporter 
Lions, Female figures, and Savages Duntreath Camel Supported 
Banner-staffs Earliest examples of two regular Supporters Sup- 
porters of the Royal Arms of Scotland First appearance of the Uni- 
corn The COMPARTMENT Its supposed use and signification 
Wreathed fence of the Douglases Compartment of the Earls of 
Perth Other figures placed under the Escutcheon Compartments 
of the Macfarlanes and Ogilvies The CORDELIERE Its origin Used 
by Ladies and Churchmen The Lacs d'amour Garlands or Stem- 
mata Examples of the Cordeliere Ancient MSS. and Books of Bla- 
zons Heraldic illustrations afforded by Plate, Pictures, Buildings, 
etc. . . 260 


Discretionary grants of Supporters in the early part of the present cen- 
tury Provision relative to "Additions" in Act of 1662 Qualified 



power of the Lord Lyon in the matter of Supporters Statement by 
Mr. Tait, interim Lyon-Depute, respecting the right to Supporters 
Peers and Peers' Sons Opinion of Sir Isaac Heard, Garter King-of- 
Arms Minor Barons Reported case in 1673 Chiefs of Clans 
Families bearing Supporters Ancient usage Royal concessions 
Questionable grants Knights of the Garter, etc. Corporations 
Wingfield's MS. observations on the subject of Supporters Imaginary 
rights of Baronets Royal Decree of 1612 Baronets of Nova Scotia 
Distinctive Badges Edmondson's opinion Illustrative Table com- 
piled from Burke's Baronetage Questionable assumption of Support- 
ers Sir George Mackenzie 011 Precedency Right of Women to Sup- 
porters Mr. Tait's limitation Varied practice of the Lyon Office 
Examples of questionable Grants in the Register Chiefs without fol- 
lowers Improved practice of the Lyon Office Case of Competition 
Special Grant ex gratia Arms of Noblemen matriculated without 
Supporters, ........... 283 



Incidental notices of the subject by Heraldic Writers Indefinite prac- 
tice of the Lyon Office Claims and Competitions referred to in Mr. 
Tait's Deposition Preference of Males a characteristic of the Feudal 
system Gradual relaxation of the principle Primitive rules of suc- 
cession Daughters of Zelophehad Dicta of Sir Thomas Craig Bos- 
well and Dr. Johnson Lord Hailes Opinions of Mr. Riddell Salic 
Law Law of Tanistry Case of M'Gillivray in 1862 The Clan Chat- 
tan Royal Heirs-female in England and Scotland " Opinion of 
Naturalists" Case of Cuninghame in 1849 Specialty in private Act 
of Parliament Judgment of the Court of Session Discussion of the 
abstract question in the rival plen dings Arguments of the Heir- 
male Statements of Mackenzie, Nisbet, and Guillim Pleadings of 
the Female Heir-of-Liae Stair on rights indivisible Heirship move- 
ables Heraldic precedence of senior co -heiress of Gifford Family of 
Meldrum Sir Philip Sydney's reply to " Leicester's Commonwealth" 
Old English " Law of Heraldri and Descentes" Extracts from 
Mackenzie and Nisbet English case of Hastings and Gray Succes- 
sion to Dignities, etc. Corroborative examples adduced by the rival 
Claimants General practice of Lyon Office in favour of Heir-male 
Incidental allusions to the abstract question by the Court in case of 
Cuninghame Subject involved in considerable difficulty Heraldic 
honours ought to accompany the substantial family rights and dig- 
nities, 321 


xviii CONTENTS. 




Arms of Adoption Comparative nobility of blood Deeds of Entail 
Provision relative to Name and Arms Case of Stevenson in 1677 
Exclusive conditions Auchinames Entail Twofold case of limita- 
tion Hope of Craighall Outline of Mount Exclusive condition 
confined to Arms Additional Name and Arms Relative provisions 
Statement of Sir George Mackenzie Provisions relative to Hus- 
bands of Heirs-female Entails of Gordonstown and Argyll Opinions 
of Christyn, Hoppingius, Chassaneus, and Feme Connexion between 
Arms and Estates Adumbrated Arms Transference of Armorial 
Bearings Disputed concessions Intervention of the Crown Case of 
Moir of Leckie in 1794 Remarkable specialty Instances of " Heral- 
dic Anomalies" Arms of Wellwood of G-arvock Heir of Entail v. 
Heir of Line Barren Honours of Heraldry, ..... 358 



Origin of Surnames Probable number in England and Scotland 
Strange English Patronymics Locality of Scottish Surnames 
The Seven most common Names in Scotland Motives for change of 
Surname Adoption of Territorial Names by younger sons Assump- 
tion of Names and Arms reprehended Conditional changes of Name 
and Arms Illustrative examples Change of Surname at Ordination 
For the purpose of concealment, etc. The Ty tiers of Belnain 
Statutory abolition of Surname of Macgregor Commemoration of 
exploits Turnbull and Stark "Arms of Assumption" Sir Cle- 
ment Clerke Change of Name from caprice or vanity Corruptions 
Elongation and Amputation Napoleon, Peel, etc. Home v. Hume 
Varied Orthography American changes of Name Deeds of Entail 
Voluntary changes of Name and Arms Adoption of maternal Sur- 
name Lord Clyde Maiden Name retained by Married Women 
Peculiar Styles Countess of Home Lord Oranmore Practice in 
Spain Spanish Theory respecting Blood " Bluid and Suet " Com- 
parative Analysis Various modes of Assumption of Name and Arms 
Illustrative examples Armorial peculiarities Herbert vice Jones in 
House of Commons Change of Christian Name Howard vice Bug 
Law of Surnames Decisions of English Courts Cases of Barlow, 
Leigh, etc. Scottish cases Kettle-Young Maxwell-Inglis Kin- 



loch v. Lowrie Finlay and Finlayson Lord Pitsligo- Change of 
Name and Arms by Act of Parliament Sir Lionel Milborue-Swin- 
iierton Pilkington Royal Licenses Proof of Identity Form of 
Procedure Relative Fees Lyou-Office Practice Strictness of former 
procedure in Scotland Statutory authority in cases of Bertoun, Max- 
well, etc. Acts of Sederunt Scottish Legal Practitioners English 
Attorneys Law and practice in France Statements of De la Roque 
and Camden Fraudulent changes of Name Sham Firms Case of 
Re vie Characteristic quality of Surnames Plebeian Names Jones 
an incognito in Wales Falconer's Law of Surnames Jones of Clytha 

Arms of Herbert English Marriage Acts Undue publication of 

Banns Surnames of Illegitimate Children Proclamation of Banns in 
Scotland Case of Bryan and Toy Free trade in Surnames Testa- 
mentary Bequests Montmorenci vice Morris English case of Bar- 
low Suggested change of Law Restrictions v. Facilities Enrol- 
ment in Chancery Dictum of Lord Chief -Justice Coke Change of 
Law undesirable, ...... 375 



Heraldic lusignia of England, Scotland, and Ireland Anns of France 
aud Hanover Alterations in the Royal Arms Union of the Crowns 
in 1603 Heraldic consultations National jealousies Proclamation 
relative to Flags Varied Armorial precedency Scottish Great Seals 
of 17th century Union of 1707 Scottish Lion's loss of precedency 
New Justiciary Seal Lyon-Depute's remonstrance in 1817 His 
various arguments The result unrecorded Agitation of 1853 Peti- 
tion addressed to Lord Lyon Fourfold grievance Brechin Memorial 
Garter King's report Treaty of Union Orders in Council in 1707 
and 1801 Uncrowned Unicorn Lyon-Depute's concurrence with 
Garter " Sylvanus Urban" on the argument of the Times Practice 
in Scotland in favour of the remonstrants Scottish Official Seals 
Opinions of English writers Varied modes of Marshalling in Scot- 
laud Seals and Offices of Government departments Compromised 
arrangement Blazon on Edinburgh Gazette A uniform achievement 
desirable Great Seal of Scotland England's Heraldic precedence, . 42.> 



The double Treasure Examples on Seals Indicative of Royal mater- 
nal descent and special services The Scotts of Thirlstane Families 
bearing the Tressure The Orle a Spanish augmentation Frequency 



of the Gyron in Spain and Scotland " Gyronny of eight" Armo- 
rial analogies in Scotland and France National Heraldic peculiarities 
Chevron and Chevronel Bezants and Torteaux " Bigiarres d'An- 
gleterre" Number of Ordinaries Alliances between France and 
Scotland " Les Ecossais en France" Scoto-French Surnames 
Heraldic resemblances Territorial Signatures Title of Master 
Position of Heraldic charges Preference of dexter to sinister Ani- 
mals, Bugle-horns, etc. Banners and Caparisons Arms of Illegitimate 
Children Ancient practice Longespee and De Lundin Modified 
use of Paternal Arms iu 15th century Illustrative examples Baton 
or Bastard-bar Its varied position Sinister and couped in modern 
practice Illegitimate descendants of Charles n. Cancellation of Baton 
Bend on Scottish Seals The Regent Moray Bordure compony 
Not always a mark of illegitimacy Formerly honourable in Scot- 
land Families by whom borne Scottish bore-brieves Colbert, Mar- 
quis of Seignelay Robert Menteith Francis Forrester alias Pitlard 
Hatchments and funeral Escutcheons Scottish mode of Marshal- 
ling " Complete nobility" Examples of funeral achievements Em- 
blazoned goods and gear Seals Coins Silver-plate Napery Equi- 
pages, etc. Collections of "Arms, Crests, and Monograms" Heraldry 
and Architecture Decoration of Churches and Mansion-houses Tile 
pavements and Stained-glass windows Glasgow Cathedral, . . 447 


I. Notices of the Lyon Kings-of-Arms, from the middle of the 

15th century, ......... 477 

II. List of Lyon-Deputes, from the end of the 17th century, . . 488 

III. Patents of Lyon Kings-of-Arms, ...... 490 

1. Commission in favour of Sir Jerome Lindsay, 1620. 

2. Patent in favour of Robert-Auriol, ninth Earl of Kinnoull, 

with remainder to his son, Thomas -Robert, Viscount 
Dupplin, afterwards tenth Earl of Kinnoull, 1790. 

IV. Acts of the Scottish Parliament relative to the jurisdiction of 

the Lyon King-of-Arms, ....... 493 

1. 1592, c. 125. Concerning the office of Lyouu King-of- 

Armes and his brether Herauldis. 

2. 1662, c. 53. Act in favours of the Lord Lyon King-at- . 




3. 1663, c. 15. Act rescinding a former Act past in the last 

Session of Parliament, anent some fies acclamed as due 
to the Lord Lyon's Office. 

4. 1672, c. 21. Act concerning the Privileges of the Office of 

Lyon King-at-Armes. 

V. List of Scottish Heraldic and Genealogical MSS., . . . 500 

1. Advocates' Library. 

2. Lyon Office. 

3. British Museum. 

4. In Private Custody. 

VI. Armorial Controversy at Perth, in 1312 ; Harding v. Seintlowe, 509 

VII. Armorial Patents, . . . . . . . . . 510 

1. Grant of Arms to the Royal Burgh of Aberdeen by Sir 

Charles Erskine of Cambo, Bart., Lyon King-of-Arms, 

2. Patent of Arms by Thomas-Robert, Earl of Kinnoull, Lord 

Lyon King-of-Arms, in favour of Sir James Campbell of 
Stracathro, Knight, 1859. 

VIII. Acts of the Scottish Parliament authorizing change of Surname, 513 

1. 1527, May 10. Protestation anent the creatioun of Robert 

Bertoun, sone to Robert Bertoun of Ovirberntoun, to be 
of the surname of Mowbrayis. 

2. 1581, c. 46. Anent the changeing of the surename of Wil- 

liame Maxwell apperand of Lammingtoun in the sureuame 
of Baillie. 

3. Act in favours of William Pyet, his kinsmen and relations. 

IX. Specimens of Royal Licenses for Assumption or Change of Sur- 
name and Arms, . . . . . . . . . 515 

1. Ordinary Form of Announcement relative to Assumption 

of additional Surname and Arms, involving Registration 
at the English College of Arms. 

2. Assumption of additional Surname and Arms, 'involving 

Registration at the Office of Ulster King-of-Arms, Dublin. 

3. Entire Change of Surname without any reference to Arms. 

INDEX, 517 




1. Prince of Wales Scotland and Denmark impaled, . . x 

2. Arms of Scotland, surrounded by the bearings of Sir David Lind- 

say, Sir James Balfour, Sir George Mackenzie, and Alexander 
Nisbet, ....... xxvii 

3. Pelican " in her piety," from the Eegent Moray's monumental brass, 1 1 

4. Arms of the City of Glasgow, from a stone in the Cathedral, . 12 

5. Seal of the Lyon Office, ..... 32 

6. Merchants' mark, from tombstone in the Greyfriars' burying- 

groimd, Perth, .'..... 65 

7. Temporary marks of Cadency, ..... 88 

8. 9. Oliphant and Oliphant of Bachilton, . . . .91 
10, 11. Dundas of that Ilk and Dundas of Arniston, . . 92 
12, 13. Maxwell and Maxwell of Teyling, . . . .94 
14, 15. Forbes and Forbes of Craigievar, .... 95 
16, 17. Duke of Argyll and Earl of London (see p. 453, note 1), . 96 

18. Cadet of Oliphant of Gask, ..... 97 

19. Earl of Panmure, ...... 97 

20. 21. Graham and Graham of Meiklewood, . . .98 
22, 23. Porteous of Halkshaw and Porteous of Craiglockart, . 99 
24-26. Pringle of Torsonce, Whytbank, and Haining, . . 99 
27, 28. Leslie and Leslie of Balquhain, . . . . 1 00 
29, 30. Turnbull of Bedrule and Minto (ancient and modern), . 101 

31. Mackenzie of Coul, . . . . . . 103 

32. Seton, Viscount Kingston, . . . . .104 

33. Erskine, Earl of Kellie, . . . . .104 

34. Campbell, Marqiiis of Breadalbane (see p. 453, note 1), . 105 

35. Stuart, Earl of Traquair, . . . . .105 

36. Montgomerie of Lainshaw, . . . . .106 
37-39. Hay, Earl of Erroll, Earl of Kinnoull, and Marquis of Tweed- 
dale, ....... 108 

40,41. "The Elphinstone" and Lord Balmerino, . . .110 



42. Hamilton of Innerwick, . . . . .111 

43. Graham of Inchbrakie, . . . . .111 

44. Wood of Balbigno, . . . . . .112 

45-47. Seton of Cariston, . . . . 113 

48. Seal of Robert, Earl of Leicester (c. 1200), . . .114 

49-52. Bruce, Jardine, Kirkpatrick, and Johnston, . . 1 14 

53, 54. Lord Semple and Fleming of Barrochan, . . . 115 

55, 56. Scott of Balwearie and Scott of Buccleuch, . . 116 

57, 58. Ross of Balnagowan and Lord Ross, . . . 117 

59. De Vere, Earl of Oxford, ... .120 

60. Lord Scrope of Bolton, . . . . .121 

61. Pitt, Earl of Chatham, . 136 

62. Sir Cloudesley Shovel, . . . . .136 

63. Tetlow of Haughton, ... 137 

64. Earl Nelson, . . . . . . .140 

65. Sir John Herschel, . . . . . 141 

66. Cameron of Fassifern, ..... 143 

67. Sir Henry Fairfax, .... .144 

68. Macdonald-Stewart, .... 145 

69. Raeburn of St. Bernard's, ..... 145 

70. Inverarity of Rosemount, ..... 146 

71. Michael M'Chlery (of London), .... 146 

72. Sir Frederick Pollock, .... 147 

73. Lorimer"of Kellyfield, .... 147 

74. Robert Burns, ...... 149 

75. " Fancied Arms," . . . . . .151 

76-79. Stewart, Lindsay, Douglas, and Hay, . . . 152 

80-83. Hamilton, Bruce, Seton, and Montgoinerie, . . 153 

84-87. Cumin, Erskine, Sinclair, and Gordon, . . . 153 

*88, 89. Ancient Chess-piece, ..... 203 

90. Arms of Isobel Ker, Viscountess of Drumlanrig, from her 

tombstone at Holyrood, . . . ... 207 

*91-93. Signet of Joan Beaufort, Queen of James I., . . 209 

*94. Armorial Lozenge on altar-piece at Holyrood Scotland and 

Denmark impaled, . . . . . . 209 

*95, 96. Lozenges on Monument at Dalkeith, . . . 210 

97. Heraldic achievement on house at Jedburgh, . . 220 

*98. Signet of Mary Queen of Scots, . . . . . 223 

99. Crest and Wreath at Bowden Church, . . . 229 
100. Coronet of five points, from tombstone of Jean Fletcher, Vis- 
countess Kingston, at Seton Chapel, . . . 234 

* The use of the woodcuts, indicated by an asterisk, has been kindly granted as follows : 
Nos. 88, 89, 91-93, 94, 101, and 103, by the Council of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland ; 
Nos. 95 and 96 by Mr. David Laing ; and No. 98 by Mr. Henry Laing. 


*101. Arms of Abbot Hunter, supported by angels, from stone at 

Melrose, ....... 265 

102. Arms of Edmonstone, simnounting a camel, from stone at 

Duntreath Castle, ...... 270 

*103. Facsimile of Date from Armorial achievement of James iv. 

at Melrose, .... . . 274 

104. Gold Coin of James in., exhibiting Arms of Scotland, sup- 

ported by a single unicorn, . . . . .274 

105. Fraser-Tytler of Belnain, ..... 383 


PLATE I. 1. Gordon, Earl of Sutherland. 2. Maitland of Lethington, 68 
(From Sir David Lindsay's Register.) 

PLATE II. Facsimile of Illuminated Arms in patent granted to John, 

Lord Maxwell of Herries, in 1567, .... 72 

PLATE IH. 1. Rait of Halgreen (c. 1673). 2. Laurence-Archer (1858), 78 
(From Lyon Register.) 

PLATE IV. Armorial Bearings of the various branches of the House 

of Lindsay, ....... 86 

PLATE V. Shields, ....... 192 

Seals f of 1. Louis vii. of France. 2. John de Mundegumbri. 3. 
Alexander n. 4. Alexander in. 5. David, Earl of Huntingdon. 

6. Galfrid of Hordene. 7. Malcolm, Earl of Angus. 8. John de 
Vesci. 9-12. Shields of 17th and 18th centuries. 

PLATE VI. Differences, etc., . . . . .196 

Seals of 1. Margaret de Bretuil, widow of Saer de Quinci, Earl of 

Winchester. 2. Alan, son of Walter, Steward of Scotland. 3. 

Walter Stewart, son of Alan. 4. Gilbert, Earl of Stratherne. 5. 

Patrick Dunbar, fifth Earl of March. 6. Sir Alexander Seton. 

7. William Eraser. 8. Edward Keith. 9. Sir Richard Wallace. 
JO. Sir Andrew Murray. 11. Patrick Hepburn. 12. William 
Murray of Tullibardin. 

PLATE VII. Differences, etc. (continued), . . . .198 

Seals of 1. Sir Alexander Lindsay, Lord of Glenesk. 2. James 

Shaw. 3. Thomas Chalmers. 4. Reginald Chein, Lord of Inver- 

ugie. 5. Reginald Chein, the younger. 6. John Hay. 7. Sir 

Nicolas Erskine. 8. Henry Douglas, Lord of Lugton. 9. Archi- 

t In the ease of nearly all the illustration!- embraced in this and the eight following 
Plates, only those portions of the Seals are engraved which are specially referred to in the 



bald Douglas, Lord of Galloway. 10. John, son of Michael. 11. 
David de Brechin. 12. Margaret Stewart, Countess of Angus 
and Mar. 

PLATE VIII. Marshalling, ...... 204 

Seals of 1. Eustacia Col vile. 2. David Stewart, Earl of Stratherne. 

3. Walter Leslie, " Dominus de Ros." 4. Mary, Queen of Scot- 
land. 5. Margaret Montgomerie, Countess of Winton. 6. William 
Meldrum of Fyvie. 7. Margareta Cragy. 8. Marion Dalziel. 
9. Isabella, Countess of Lennox and Duchess of Albany. 10. 
Alison Douglas, widow of David Home of Wedderburn. 11. 
Margaret Cockburn, wife of 1 2. William Hay of Tallo. 

PLATE IX. Crests, Helmets, etc., . . . . .218 

Seals of 1. Joan Beaufort, widow of James i. 2. Walter Stewart, 
Earl of Atholl. 3. Sir James Lindsay, Lord of Crawford. 

4. Sir James Douglas of Dalkeith. 5. Sir John Hamilton. 
6. James Hamilton, second Earl of Arran. 7. Patrick Dunbar, 
seventh Earl of March. 8. John Stewart, Earl of Carrick. 

9. Alexander in. 10. Robert n. 

PLATE X. Crests, Helmets, etc. (continued), .... 23(5 
Seals of 1. David Lindsay. Lord of Crawford. 2. William, first 
Earl of Douglas. 3. Sir Thomas Erskine. 4. Sir John Max- 
well of Polloc. 5. George Dunbar, eleventh Earl of March. 6. 
Alexander Stewart, Duke of Albany. 7- Robert i. 8. Robert 
Stewart, Duke of Albany. 9. Alexander, Lord of the Isles. 

10. John, fourth Lord Hay of Yester. 11. James Douglas, Lord 
of Dalkeith. 12. Alan Stewart of Ochiltree. 13. John of 

PLATE XI. Mottos and Supporters, .... 244 

Seals of 1. Isabella Wallace. 2. Robert Bruce, Lord of Annan - 
dale. 3. James Hepburn, Earl of Bothwell. 4. John Ruthven, 
third Earl of Gowrie. 5. Patrick, Lord Ruthven. 6. Walter 
Stewart, Earl of Atholl. 7. William Ruthven. 8. William (first 
Lord ?) Seton. 9. Mary of Gueldres, Queen of James u. 10. 
David u. 

PLATE XII. Early Supporters, ..... 268 

Seals of 1 . Robert Bruce, Earl of Carrick. 2. Reginald Crawford. 
3. William Stirling. 4. Alexander Stewart, Earl of Menteith. 

5. Euphemia Leslie, Countess of Ross. 6. Adam Forrester of 
Corstorphine. 7. Isabel Douglas, Countess of Mar. 8. Archi- 
bald, fourth Eai'l of Douglas. 9. William, eighth Earl of 



PLATE XIII. Supporters (continued), .... 

Seals of 1. James Sandilands, Lord Torphiclien. 2. Colin Camp- 
bell, third Earl of Argyll. 3. James I. 4. Mary, Queen of 
Scotland. 5. Margaret, Duchess of Chatelherault. 6. Henrietta- 
Maria, widow of Charles I. 7. Muriel, Countess of Strathern. 
8. Muriel, Countess of Strathern, as engraved by Sir George 

PLATE XIV. Compartments, ..... 

Compartments of 1. Drummond, Earl of Perth. 2. Dundas of that 
Ilk. 3. Robertson of Struan. 4. Denham of old. 5. Lord 
Napier. 6. Seal of Dougal Campbell of Craignish. 7. Arms of 
Queen Mary of Lorraine with garland, from sculptured stone at 
Leith. 8. Arms of Duke of Lennox and Duchess of Buccleuch, 
from a playing-card. 






BESIDES embracing the regulation of all that relates to 
the use of Armorial Insignia, the " Science" of Heraldry 
describes the various duties of the officers appointed to 
decide questions of Precedency, and to superintend the 
solemnities at Coronations, the creation of Peers and 
other public ceremonies. Our present inquiries, how- 
ever, will be entirely directed to the consideration of 
the former branch of the subject, viz., the bearing of 
Coat-armour, to which the term " Heraldry" is now com- 
monly, although not very accurately, confined. 

Armorial Bearings are defined by Sir George Mac- 
kenzie to be " Marks of hereditary honour, given or 
authorized by some supreme Power, to gratify the Bearer 
or distinguish Families ;' n and the same learned writer, 
under no fewer than twenty heads, sets forth the reasons 
for which they are conferred, and the advantages which 
are derived from a knowledge of Heraldry. A some- 
what similar definition is given by Nisbet, who describes 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. i. 


them as " hereditary marks of honour, regularly com- 
posed of certain tinctures and figures, granted or autho- 
rized by Sovereigns, for distinguishing, differencing, and 
illustrating persons, families, and communities." 1 Unlike 
emblems and other similar devices, heraldic ensigns are 
" regularly composed of certain tinctures and figures," 
and are distinguished from all arbitrary marks and sym- 
bols by being " granted or authorized" by the Sovereign. 
They received the name of Armories or " Coats of Arms," 
from their immediate relation to warfare, and from the 
circumstance of their being displayed, not only on the 
shield, the helmet, and the saddle-cloth, but also on the 
Coat, or tunic, which was worn over the armour. The 
resemblance between the use of Armorial Bearings as 
hereditary marks of honour, and the jus imaginum of 
the Romans, has been repeatedly noticed. " As in ancient 
times, the statues or images of their ancestors were 
proofs of their nobility, so, of latter times, Coat-arms 
came in lieu of those statues or images, and are the most 
certain proofs and evidences of nobility. Hence it fol- 
loweth that jus nobilitatis is nothing else but jus ima- 
ginis ; insomuch that the word imago doth oftentimes 
signify nobility ; and the right of having images of their 
ancestors was the same as the right of having arms 
now with us." 2 

A vast amount of laborious research has been ex- 
pended in endeavouring to ascertain the origin of Armo- 
rial Bearings, which have been variously derived from the 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. i. p. 9. 

2 Brydal's Jus Imagini* apud Anglos, p. 53. 


twelve tribes of Israel, the siege of Troy, 1 the conquests 
of Alexander, the introduction of the Feudal system, the 
feats of Tilt and Tournament, and the Crusades or Holy 
Wars. In the earliest ages of the world, it was the prac- 
tice of warriors to exhibit emblems and badges on their 
shields and banners, but these were mere personal dis- 
tinctions assumed and abandoned at pleasure ; and it- 
no w seems to be pretty generally admitted that, although 
the Crusades unquestionably exercised a very important 
influence on its gradual development, the first appear- 
ance of the Science of Armory, in the accepted sense of 
the term, cannot be assigned to a more remote date than 
the middle of the twelfth or the beginning of the thir- 
teenth century. To the same period we may also refer 
the general adoption of hereditary surnames, which, 
along with regular heraldic insignia, have ever since 
continued to distinguish families from one another. 

The term " blazon" is usually derived from the Ger- 
man word Hasen, to blow a horn, in allusion to the custom 
of the ancient heralds sounding their trumpets before de- 
claring the bearings of the Knights who presented them- 
selves at the Lists. While the original introduction of 
Heraldry may probably be traced to Germany, the credit 
of having reduced it to a Science is unquestionably due 
to France, and a large number of the heraldic terms 
used by all the nations of Europe are borrowed from the 
language of that country. 

In a recent Work on the subject of Armorial Bearings, 2 

1 See Boswell's Life of Johnson, 2 The Pursuivant of Arms, by J. 

Croker's edition, chap, xxvii. R. Planchf, F.S.A. 


the learned author, guided solely by facts, endeavours 
to establish the four following propositions, and most of 
his conclusions appear to be substantially correct : 
" Firstly, that Heraldry appears as a Science at the com- 
mencement of the thirteenth century, and that although 
Armorial Bearings had then been in existence, undoubt- 
edly for some time previous, no precise date has yet been 
discovered for their first assumption. Secondly, that in 
their assumption the object of the assumers was not, as 
has been so generally asserted and believed, to record 
any achievement or to symbolize any virtue or qualifica- 
tion, but simply to distinguish their persons and pro- 
perties ; to display their pretensions to certain honours 
or estates ; attest their alliances, or acknowledge their 
feudal tenures. 1 Thirdly, that wherever it has been 
possible to sift the evidence thoroughly, it has appeared 
that the popular traditions of the origin of certain sin- 
gular Coats of Arms have been the invention of a later 
period ; stories fabricated to account for the bearings, 
and sometimes flatter the descendants of the family, by 
attributing to their ancestors the most improbable ad- 
ventures or achievements. Fourthly, that the real value 

1 This appears to be the most ques- modern writers on Heraldry, and 
tionable of Mr. Planchg's four pro- appears to prefer the " implicit cre- 
positions. It cannot be doubted that dulity and extravagant hypotheses " 
ancient Heraldry was frequently syrn- of the earlier authors. We incline 
bolical, and even in the present day to think, however, that, notwith- 
this characteristic of the Science is standing his ingenious speculations 
not altogether obsolete. and learned notes, the use of here- 
in his Plea for the Antiquity of ditary arms, at least in this country, 
Heraldry (24 pp. 8vo. 1853), Mr. cannot be traced to an earlier period 
Smith Ellis, of the Middle Temple, than that which is specified in the 
condemns the "rigid scepticism" of text. 


of the study of Heraldry has but recently become ap- 
parent, and that, however some may regret the demoli- 
tion of old and familiar legends, the importance of 
eliciting genealogical facts must be admitted by all, and 
the new interest thus imparted to the Science elevate it 
in the eyes of many who have hitherto looked upon it 
with indifference, if not with contempt." 

Perhaps no stronger example could be adduced of the 
remarkable tenacity of associations than the continued 
use of Armorial Ensigns, notwithstanding the alleged 
" enlightenment " of the age in which we live, and the 
reforming mania of the Utilitarians, which threatens the 
indiscriminate extermination of all established customs. 
If the days of Chivalry have departed, the noble Science 
of Heraldry, which formed one of their most appropriate 
characteristics, far from ceasing to exist, still retains no 
inconsiderable hold on the sympathies of our country- 
men. In spite of its apparent uselessness and the 
alarming technicalities of its language ; and although 
quite unintelligible, not only to the great mass of the 
community, but even to many of those who emblazon 
its multifarious devices on almost every chattel which 
they possess, the bearing of these very devices is uni- 
versally regarded as the essential mark of gentility. 
Doubtless a certain section of the public who com- 
placently regard themselves as the oracles of the age 
and the advanced guard of social progress endeavour 
to persuade their fellows that everything in the shape of 
rank or distinction is both obsolete and worthless. But 
their preaching is unheeded, or, at least, practically dis- 


believed; and ordinary mortals still seem to think other- 
wise, thus exhibiting a wholesome dread of that " crea- 
ture of civilisation " commonly called " Cant," which 
appears to take great delight in pretending to despise 
all kinds of honours. Probably the worst of the many 
phases of pride is that which "apes humility," affect- 
ing a contempt for the rank to which it has not been 
born, and which is certainly quite as indefensible as the 
folly that worships rank for its own sake. Such a piti- 
able weakness formed an element in the character of the 
lamented Sir Robert Peel, as well as (somewhat less 
remarkably) in that of the shrewd and practical Stephen- 
son, by the former of whom it is well known that titles 
of honour were ostentatiously rejected. 

The increasing interest in the study of Heraldry may 
be fairly inferred from the large number of able treatises, 
devoted to its elucidation, which have lately appeared, 1 
and by-and-bye, most assuredly, the ignorance of a Frank 
Osbaldistone will merit, more than ever, the rebuke of 

1 Of recent treatises we may men- the 16th edition appeared about 

tion the following, which have all three years ago. For works of an 

been published since the year 1840 : earlier date, reference may be made 

Montagu's Guide to the Study of to Moule's Bibliotheca Heraldica 

Heraldry Moule's Heraldry of Fish published in 1822 a valuable ana- 

Barrington's Lectures on Heraldry lytical catalogue of Books on Gene- 

Evans' Grammar of British Heral- alogy, Heraldry, and kindred sub- 

clry Newton's Display of Heraldry jects. 

Lower's Cariosities of Heraldry The only works on the subject of 

The Oxford Glossary of Heraldry Scottish Heraldry are those of Sir 

Planche's Pursuivant of Arms and George Mackenzie of Rosehaugh (the 

Millington's Heraldry in History, founder of the Advocates' Library), 

Poetry, and Romance. Nor ought and Alexander Nisbet, of the family 

we to pass over in silence Clark's of Nisbet of that Ilk : 
useful Introduction to Heraldry (on- I. By Mackenzie. ( 1 .) The Science 

ginally published in 1775), of which of Heraldry, treated as a part of the 


his sprightly kinswoman : " Not know the figures o 
heraldry, of what could your father be thinking V 
Without pausing to inquire into the causes which con- 
tribute to the permanency of Armorial Bearings and to 
the general estimation in which they have always been 
held, it is sufficient to describe them as the " Shorthand 
of History," the pictorial chronicle of days gone by. the 
evidence of gentle blood, the record of important alli- 
ances, the symbolical title to patrimonial rights, and, not 
unfrequently, the unerring guide in cases of disputed 
succession. The utility of the Science of Heraldry to the 
historian and the architect has been repeatedly acknow- 
ledged, and it is hardly necessary to mention the various 
ways in which Armorial Ensigns have proved of material 

Civil Law, and Law of Nations 98 
pp. folio usually bound with (2.) 
Observations upon the Laws and 
Customs of Nations as to Precedency 
92 pp. folio both published at 
Edinburgh in 1680. These two 
treatises are embraced in the second 
volume of Sir George Mackenzie's 
Miscellaneous Works, 2 vols. folio, 
Edinburgh, 1722. 

II. By Nisbet. (I.) An Essay on 
Additional Figures and Marks of 
Cadency 276 pp. 12mo, Edinburgh, 
1702. (2.) An Essay on the Ancient 
and Modern Use of Armories 224 
pp. 4to, Edinburgh, 1718. (3.) A 
System of Heraldry, Speculative and 
Practical 151 pp. folio, Edinburgh, 
1722. The author died three years 
afterwards. A second volume was 
printed at Edinburgh, by Robert 
Fleming, in 1742. Both volumes 
were reprinted in 1804, and pub- 
lished in London, with new titlr* 

only, in 1817. A new and improved 
edition of this useful work would 
prove of great service. 

The best Foreign Works on the 
subject of Heraldry are : 

1. (French.) Claude Menes trier's 
"Veritable Art tin Blazon," published 
at Lyons in 1671. 

2. (German.) Philip Jacob Spener's 
" Insignium Theoria sen Operis Her- 

3. (Spanish.) Gerhardus Franken- 
au's " Bibliotheca-Hispanica Histo- 
rico Genealogico-Heraldica." 

Several Italian, Dutch, and Swed- 
ish writers on Heraldry are also 
worthy of consultation. In the 
words of Chevalier de Courcelles, 
" II n'y a peut-6tre pas de science en 
apparence plus frivole, et sur laquelle 
on ait tant et si gravement 6crit, 
que celle du Blazon." 

1 Rob Roy, vol. i. chap. x. 


service to the lawyer in matters of Genealogy. Not only 
the Seals of Charters, Testaments, and other documents, 
but even the blazoriings which occur on Churches, Castles, 
Monuments, Banners, Pictures, and Plate, have often 
thrown important light upon doubtful questions of Mar- 
riage and descent. "Welsh families," says Grimaldi, 
" are more known by their arms than by their names ; 
and even in English families, many persons of the same 
name can only now be classed with their proper families, 
by an inspection of the Arms on their seals, shields, and 
the like." 1 The same author adduces the following 
proofs of the genealogical utility of Armorial Bearings : 

" I know three families," says Bigland, " who have 
acquired estates by virtue of preserving the arms and 
escutcheons of their ancestors." 2 

" The Antiquity of a Church window for the proof of 
a match and issue hath been delivered to a jury at an 
assize, and been accepted." 3 

In the Harleian MSS. (1386) is " the argument of 
the Officers of Arms against Sir Michael Blount, who 
endeavoured to prove himself heyre-male of the bodye of 
Sir Walter, first Lord Mountjoy, from a glasse windowe," 
set up at Ives, in Buckinghamshire, in the reign of 
Henry vu. 

Amongst the evidence of the Earl of Huntingdon, 
received by the Attorney-General in 1818, in support of 
his claim to the Peerage of Huntingdon, there was pro- 

1 Oriylnes Geitealogicce, p. 82. 3 Burton's History of Leicester - 

2 Observations on Parochial Rer/ix- shire, 
tcrs, 1767. 


duced a very old armorial shield, emblazoned with the 
bearings of Hastings Earl of Huntingdon, quartered with 
those of Stanley, as evidence of the marriage of Henry, 
5th Earl of Huntingdon, to the daughter of Ferdinando, 
Earl of Derby. 1 

In Scotland, as in Wales, where surnames are com- 
paratively few in number, Armorial Bearings afford no 
inconsiderable assistance in authenticating Genealogies 
and in distinguishing the various branches of a widely 
extended Clan. Unaided by the characteristic symbols 
of the Herald, and in the absence of an estate to serve as 
a designation, who, for example, could ever comprehend 
the endless ramifications of the families of Douglas, 
Campbell, or Scott ? 

In his recent work on the early history of Scotland, 
after referring to the great importance of some know- 
ledge of Heraldry to the student of historical antiquities, 
Professor Innes observes, that " for the pursuit of family 
history of topographical and territorial learning of 
ecclesiology of architecture it is altogether indispen- 
sable ; and its total and contemptuous neglect in this 
country is one of the causes why a Scotchman can rarely 
speak or write on any of these subjects, without being 

1 Huntingdon Peerage, p. 359. M'Clintock's interesting narrative of 

Most of these cases, as well as his voyage to the Arctic Seas. Se- 

others of more recent date, are re- veral silver spoons and forks exhibit- 

ferred to in Hubback's Evidence of ing the Crests of some of the officers 

Succession, pp. 694-6. See also Mon- of the lamented Franklin's Expedi- 

tagu's Guide to the Study ofHeroMry, tion were among the articles found 

p. 35. by the crew of the "Fox," and 

A melancholy instance of the use afterwards transmitted, as precious 

of Armorial Bearings for the pur- relics, to the surviving relatives in 

pose of identification is mentioned in England. 


exposed to the charge of using a language he does not 
understand." 1 

A still higher and more philosophical branch of heraldic 
inquiry is adverted to by Lord Lindsay in one of his 
Letters on the sculpture of the Lombards. In noticing 
the emb]ematical character of Griffins, Lions, and other 
monsters, as they appear in the porches of Churches and 
on the roofs of Cathedrals, he alludes to their ultimate 
adoption by the Italian States as Crests, and also to their 
retention, to the present day, as the Supporters of royal 
and noble escutcheons, all over Europe. " Heraldry/' he 
continues, " is in fact the last remnant of the ancient 
symbolism, and a legitimate branch of Christian art ; 
the Griffins and Unicorns, f esses and chevrons, the very 
tinctures or colours, are all symbolical each has its 
mystic meaning, singly and in combination ; and thus 
every genuine old Coat-of-arms preaches a lesson of 
chivalric honour and Christian principle to those that 
inherit it, truths little suspected now-a-days in our 
Heralds' offices." 2 Like the monsters of early legends, 
the Unicorn, Dragon, Phoenix, Allerion, and other chime- 
rical figures of Heraldry, originally had a symbolical 
meaning. Thus, the Unicorn was regarded as the em- 
blem of purity and virtue, and frequently occurs, in a 
symbolical sense, in the paintings of the Catacombs. 
The Dragon symbolized " that old serpent" the Devil, 
represented by Eaphael as quelled by the mere touch of 
the Cross in the hands of St. Margaret, and transfixed by 
the irresistible spear of that " blyssed and holy martyr 

1 Scotland in the Middle Ages, p. 303. 2 Sketches of Christian Art, ii. 49. 


Saynt George," the Patron of the realm of England. 
The Phoenix a portion of Jane Seymour's badge, and 
also the Duke of Somerset's crest was anciently a 
symbol of our Saviour's resurrection, as the Pelican, 
" in her piety," was an emblem of his death. Lions 

and Eagles, both chimerical and natural, were frequently 
assumed as symbolical of magnanimity ; the two-headed 
Eagle being in imitation of the Koman ensign, which, 
according to Menestrier, was borrowed from the East 
to denote the conjunct reign of two Emperors. 1 Al- 
though occasionally placed as charges in the shield, 
most of these allegorical figures, as already stated, are 
usually borne as crests and supporters ; and they were, 
no doubt, adopted in the former capacity, by ancient 

1 The Anns used by the City of within a double treasure, flowered 
Perth (alias St. Johnstoun) since the and counter-flowered, argent. The 
Reformation, are said to bear refer- old City seal, which was laid aside 
ence to its Roman origin, viz., an after the Reformation as " super- 
eagle displayed with two heads or, stitious," represented the decollation 
surnioiinted on the breast with an of St. John the Baptist, with the 
escutcheon gules charged with the legend: S. Communitatis Ville Sancti 
Holy Lamb, passant regardant, car- Johannis Baptixte de Berth, 
rying the banner of 'St. Andrew, 



warriors, for the purpose of inspiring the enemy with 
terror. According to an accomplished writer, " when 
an enemy was subdued or slain, who bore on his shield 
(or as his crest) a dragon, griffin, wolf, or bear, the 
narrative of the occurrence often stated that a dragon, 
wolf, or bear, had been killed ; and one or other of these, 
or perhaps the head only, was sometimes exhibited on 
the shield of the conqueror, as a trophy of victory/' 1 
Nor was this mode of expression peculiar to romance. 
The French historians speak of Philip Augustus " con- 
quering the Dragon," when he overcame Otho the Fourth, 
who bore a Dragon, as the standard of the Empire, at 
the battle of Bovines. 

The arms of the City of Glasgow have by some been 
regarded as affording a curious example of symbolical 
Heraldry, being thus blazoned :- Argent, an oak-tree 

growing out of a mount, and surmounted by a bird a 
bell on the sinister side, 2 and in base a salmon with a ring 

x . Brydson's View of Heraldry in 
reference to Chivalry and the Feudal 
System, p. 97. 

2 In the illustration, which is 
copied from a photograph of a sculp- 

tured stone in Glasgow Cathedral 
(for which the author is indebted to 
Mr. James-Alexander Campbell), the 
bell is represented on the dexter side 
of the tree. 


in its mouth,- -all proper. In accordance with that opi- 
nion, the Tree is said to represent the Tree of Life ; the 
Bird, the Holy Spirit ; the Bett, the proclamation of the 
Gospel ; the Fish, our blessed Saviour (of whom it was 
a favourite emblem in the early Christian Church) ; and 
the Ring, the marriage of the Church to Christ. In sup- 
port of this religious interpretation, the ancient motto 
of the City has been brought forward " Let Glasgow 
flourish by the preaching of the Word." In these dege- 
nerate days, the motto is abruptly terminated at the 
word " flourish." It would appear, however, that a more 
correct explanation of the bearings of the Western Metro- 
polis is that which is usually given, viz., the comme- 
moration of the well-known miracle attributed to St. 
Kentigern, the Patron Saint of Glasgow, with reference 
to the recovery, in the fish's mouth, of the lost ring of 
the frail Queen of Caidyow. 1 The tale of Polycrates, 
as related by Herodotus, centuries before the time of 
St. Kentigern, is probably the earliest version of the 
fish and the ring ; and the same legend is also intro- 
duced into the Koran of Mahomet, with reference to 
Solomon and one of his concubines. 

A limited acquaintance with the principles of Heraldry 
is of unquestionable advantage to that large section of 
the community who indulge in the perusal of poetry and 
romance. The most careless reader of the poets of the 
Middle Ages, or of the works of fiction of more modern 

1 This is the view adopted by Mr. pp. xxiv. et seq. (Maitland Club, 
Joseph Robertson in his Preface to 1846.) 
the Liber Colleyii Nostre Doinine, etc., 


times, cannot fail to have been struck with the richness 
and variety of the heraldic allusions. Almost every page 
of Sir Walter Scott exhibits his genuine sympathy with 
the " noble science ; " and of his intense anxiety to be 
strictly correct in its most minute details, we have abun- 
dant evidence in his published correspondence. 1 In the 
case of the author of Waverley, a taste for heraldic and 
genealogical investigations was the natural associate of a 
variety of kindred feelings, but several instances might 
be adduced of distinguished men, remarkable for the sim- 
plicity of their character and an entire exemption from 
vain ostentation, who manifested a great interest in the 
same pursuits. Such were David Hume, Benjamin 
Franklin, and Bishop Watson, 2 by all of whom a rever- 
ence for ancestry was felt and acknowledged. Leibnitz 
did not disdain to take an interest in genealogical in- 
quiries, which also occupied the attention of Cecil and 
Fuller, and amused the leisure of Gray and Gibbon. 
Referring to the sentiment of birth, the historian of the 
Roman Empire remarks, that " our calmer judgment will 
rather tend to moderate than to suppress the pride of an 
ancient and worthy race. The satirist may laugh, the 
philosopher may preach ; but Reason herself will respect 
the prejudices and habits which have been consecrated 
by the experience of mankind." 3 In speaking of Her- 

1 See Lockhart's Life of Scott, of Llandaff in 1782 died 1816 
chapters xlv., Iviii., and Ix. (Letters whose grandson, Mr. Knight Watson, 
to Mr. Richardson, Lord Montagu, is the present accomplished Secretary 
and Mr. Constable) ; also Hannay's of the English Society of Antiquaries. 
Exsays from the Quarterly Review, 3 Gibbon's Autobiography. In the 
p. 68. same work, the author makes the 

2 Richard Watson, elected Bishop following curious allusion to his 


aldiy and Genealogy as his favourite study, the late Sir 
Andrew Agnew used to say, that " far from ministering 
to pride, as was sometimes thought, it rather tended to 
promote humility. It taught him that, while many were, 
as regarded rank, below him, many were also far above 
him ; and the higher any one rose in family distinction, 
he argued that it must be the more humbling to think 
how far he came short of worthily filling his position in 
society." x 

In former times, the accurate blazoning of Coats-of- 
arms was considered of so much importance, that Herald 
Painters were obliged to obtain formal license in order 
to pursue their avocation, and were liable to punishment 
if they ventured to practise without due authority. 
Owing to the rare knowledge of writing, charters and 
other documents were seldom subscribed by the granter, 
who generally appended his Seal of Arms as an admitted 
proof of his consent, a custom which is believed to have 
greatly contributed to the regularity of Armorial Bearings. 
As early as the reign of David I. (1124-53), we find very 
distinct allusion to the subject of documentary Seals. In 
book iii. chap. 8 of the Regiam Majestatem, it is declared 

armorial ensigns : " My family arms provoked him by an unjust lawsuit, 

are the same which are borne by the ' But this singular mode of revenge, 

Gibbons of Kent, ... a lion ram- for which he obtained the sanction 

pant gardant, between three scallop of Sir William Seagar, King-at-anns, 

shells argent, on a field azure. . . . soon expired with its author ; and on 

About the reign of James I., the his own monument, in the Temple 

three harmless scallop shells were Church, the monsters vanish, and 

changed by Edmund Gibbon, Esquire, the three scallop shells resume their 

into three Ogresses, or female Canui- proper and hereditary place." 

bals, with a design of stigmatizing * M'Crie's Life of Sir Andrew 

three ladies, his kinswomen, who had Agitcic, p. 23. 


that a writ may be approved " be comparison of moe 
scales ; or be other writtes sealed with the samine scale, 
quherof there is no suspition of falset, nor of diversitie 
of scales ;" which failing, the controversy " may be de- 
cyded by singulare battell, because it is ane crime of 
falset." It was enacted, by certain Scottish statutes, that 
every Freeholder should have his proper seal of Arms, 
with which either he himself, or his attorney, was required 
to " compear" at the head Court of the shire, and all who 
failed to comply with these provisions were liable to 
punishment by fine. 1 Accordingly, it became the common 
practice for gentlemen to send their seals in lead to the 
clerk of Court, who kept them in his office for production 
or comparison when occasion required ; and to counter- 
feit another man's seal was reckoned no less a crime than 
forgery. " Anciently," says Nisbet, " our notaries were 
obliged, in transumpts of rights, to describe or blazon 
the seal, because it was the seal only that verified the 
deeds or evidents, which then were not subscribed by the 
granters. I have met (he adds) with several such de- 
scriptions of blazons by our notaries in transumpts, some 
of them awkwardly, and some handsomely done." 2 By 

1 Feb. 21, 1400 (Rob. m.), and graved. (See Sim's Manual for the 

1430, 9 Parl., c. 21 (Jac. I.) Genealogist, etc., 1856.) 

The former of these statutes pro- 2 System of Heraldry, i. 101. As 
vides, " quod sigilla siiit et non sig- an example of a confused description, 
neta sicut ante ista tempo ra fieri he gives the following, relative to 
consuevit." In the time of Edward n. the seal of John Lord Halyburton in 
(1307-27), seals became so very com- 1447 : "Literam assedationis stipa- 
mon in England, that they were used tarn sigillo nobilis Domini Johannis 
not only by those who bore Arms, de Halyburton, in quo sigillo sculp- 
but others fashioned signets, on which turn fuit unum scutum, in dicto scuto 
initials, birds, flowers, etc., were en- bend lossyne et trias faces ; et in in- 


1540, c. 117 (folio edition, c. 37), it was " statute and 
ordained, that because mennis seales may of adventure 
be tint (lost), quhair-throw great hurt may be genered 
to them that awe the sarnin : And that mennis seales 
may be fenzied or put to writinges after their decease, 
in hurt and prejudice of our Soverain Lord's lieges : 
That therefore na faith be given, in time cumming, to 
ony obligation, band, or uther writing under ane seale, 
without the subscription of him that awe the samin, 
and witnesse : or else gif the partie cannot write, with 
the subscription of ane Notar thereto." 1 The sealing 
of deeds, however, still continued necessary, and was 
expressly required as a solemnity by 1579, c. 80 (folio 
edition, c. 18). In 1584, it was dispensed with in the 
case of deeds containing a clause of registration, and 
shortly afterwards the practice was altogether laid 
aside. 2 

feriore parte dicti sigilli unuin aim- for inaiiy can forge a subscription 

plex bend, et unum bend lossyne." who cannot forge a seal, so that each 

1 See also 1525, c. 3. These are forger behoved to associate at least 
the earliest Scottish statutes relating another with himself, which would 
to the subscriptiou of deeds, which discourage them before the cheat, or 
is now regulated by 1681, c. 5 help to discover the forgers after the 
(Car. n). cheat was perpetrated." The ordi- 

2 See Erskine's /<?< fe of the Law nary use of the word Signature, in 
of Scotland, Book iii. Tit. 2. 7. reference to subscription, is rather a 

The continued use of Seals in the curious instance of a misapplication 
execution of English deeds forms a of terms. Doubtless a writer's sub- 
well-known contrast to our own mo- scription constitutes his Signum or 
dern system, and appears to harmo- mark, but it is equally certain that, 
nize with the views of Sir George in its original and accurate accepta- 
Mackenzie, who quaintly observes, tion, the word signature had reference 
in the first chapter of his Science of to a Seal. An interesting allusion 
Heraldry, that " it would be a further to the joint practice of subscrip- 
check upon forgers of papers that the tion and sealing occurs in the last 
granter's seal were to be appended ; verse of the 32d chapter of Jeremiah 



The preceding observations are entirely confined to 
the Armorial ensigns of the past, handed down from 
generation to generation, of which the descendants of 
the original bearers may feel justly proud, and to whom, 
not unfrequently, the ancestral shield and surname alone 
remain, long after the ancient stronghold has been 
levelled with the dust, and many a broad acre become 
the inheritance of strangers. And surely there is nothing 
either absurd or irrational in the usual desire of those 
who, in modern times, have become possessed of wealth 
and influence, by means of honest labour, to distinguish 
themselves -and their families, by the adoption of peculiar 
" charges," from those who bear a common surname. 
" Several of the most powerful families of our titled 
aristocracy, and some even of the oldest, inherit their 
wealth and consequence from a clothier, a goldsmith, or 
a -merchant of a former age, who felt as much pride in 
bequeathing to them the armorial bearings he had ob- 
tained from the Heralds' College, as the property accu- 
mulated by his prudence and industry. It is the peculiar 
boast of this Country that, almost from the foundation of 
the Monarchy, the ranks of her aristocracy have been 
thus gradually fed, and their numbers kept up, by addi- 
tion of the eminent and enterprising from the general 
mass ; so that no one has ever been so lowly in birth or 
station that he might not aspire, by the exercise of his 
talents and energies, to become the founder of a family 
which should eventually take rank with the direct 

(B.C. 590) : " Men shall buy fields and seal them, and take witnesses in 
for money, and subscribe evidences, the land of Benjamin." 


descendants of the Knights of Battle-Abbey, or the 
Barons of Runnymede." 1 

It is not here intended, however, to defend the noble 
Science of Heraldry which constitutes a portion of the 
history of Civilisation from the sneers of the ignorant or 
from the harmless contempt of those unenviable indivi- 
duals who, shutting their eyes upon the influences of the 
past as well as on the issues of the future, endeavour to 
bound their contemplations by the age in which they live. 
It would, moreover, be quite superfluous, as this has 
already been done by various learned writers. Proceeding 
on the simple fact that the estimation of Heraldic ensigns 
still continues as of old, and that, in Scotland at least, 
the Bearing of Coats Armorial is a matter of undoubted 
legal right, our main object is to endeavour to set forth 
the rules and principles which regulate their use and 

A few short extracts from the works of acknowledged 
Authorities may here be introduced, in confirmation of 
the assertion that the use of Armorial Bearings is a 
matter of legal right. 

" Real injuries," says Sir George Mackenzie, " are 
committed by hindering a man to use what is his own, 
by removing his seat out of its place in the Church, . . . 
by arresting his goods unjustly, by wearing in contempt 
what belongs to another man as a mark of Honour, by 
razing shamefully a man's hair or beard, by offering to 

1 Quarterly Review, vol. Ivi. p. 2. its adaptation to the present times 
tfee also some very sensible observa- in the Gentleman's Magazine for 1851, 
tions on the vitality of Heraldry and vol. xxxvi. (new ser.) pp. 295 and 515. 


strike him in public;, or by striking him, or riving or 
abusing his clothes, or his house, and many other ways." 1 

In the second chapter of his Science of Heraldry, 
treated as a part of the Civil Law and Law of Nations, 
the same Author remarks, that " by the civil law, he 
who bears and uses another man's Arms to his prejudice, 
vel in ejus scandalum et ignominiam, is to be punished 
arbitrarily at the discretion of the Judge ; but he who 
usurps his Prince's Arms loses his head, and his goods 
are confiscated." 2 

Again, in the words of Erskine, " Real injuries are 
committed by doing whatever may either hurt one's 
person, as giving him a blow ; or may affect his honour 
or dignity, as the bare aiming of a blow without strik- 
ing; assuming a Coat of Arms or any mark of distinc- 
tion PROPER TO ANOTHER, spitting in his face," etc. ; and 
" this offence," he adds, " is punished arbitrarily by the 
Judge Ordinary, according to the circumstances attend- 
ing it, either by fine or imprisonment." 3 In like manner, 
to quote the language of an English writer, " between 
Armes and Names is a certain conformity ; so that it is 
a thing unlawful for a man (but upon great occasion) to 
change his Armes or his Name. 4 . . . But further, there 
is between these Armes and their Bearers a kind of sym- 
pathy, or natural participation of qualities, insomuch as 
whoso dishonourably or unreverently useth the Armes of 

1 Laws and Customs of Scotland in is for the most part directed and re- 
matters Criminal, Part i. Tit. 30. 3. gulated by the Civil Law." 

2 In like manner, in his well-known 3 Institute of the Law of Scotland, 
'Accedcns of Armory, Gerard Legh, Book iv. Tit. 4. .81. 

informs us that " the law of arms 4 See, however, chap, ix., Infra. 


any man, seemeth to have offered indignity to the per- 
son of their Bearer, so as (according to some authors) 
their owner shall light himself against such an offender, 
actione injuriarum" ] 

In the case of M'Donnell v. Macdonald, in the year 
1826, Lord (William) Robertson remarks that s " the 
Lord Lyon's power to grant new Armorial Bearings is 
merely discretionary and ministerial, and with that the 
Court of Session cannot interfere. But if the Lord Lyon 
should grant to one person Arms which another is en- 
titled to bear, and should refuse to give redress, there 
could be no doubt of the jurisdiction of the Court of 
Session to entertain an action at the instance of the 
party to have his light declared, as this would involve a 
question of property, which a right to bear particular 
Ensigns Armorial undoubtedly is." In the same case, 
Lord Pitmilly observes : " As to the abstract principle, 
it is clear that wherever there is a competition as to the 
right to Armorial Bearings, an appeal lies to the Court of 
Session by advocation, and also by reduction, which is 
the proper remedy when the Arms are already granted." 

1 Abridgement of Guittim, by Samuel juriae sunt qiue aut pulsatione corpus, 

Kent, i. 5. aut convicio aureis, aut aliqua tur- 

See also Hopingius De Insignils pitudine vitain cujuspiam violant." 
(1642), Cap. ii. Par. xii. Membr. 3. (Cicero, 1. 4, ad Herennium.) 
" De propriis et alienis Iiisignibus ;" " Quodvis dictum factumve, ad al- 
and cap. xiv., " De actionibus In- terius contnmeliam dolo malo direc- 
signium Nomine competentibus." turn." (Heineccius, Inst. Lib. iv. 

That the term " injury" has long Tit. 4, " De Injuriis.") 
been regarded as synonymous with " Delictum in contemptum hominis 

affront or contumely, will appear liberi admissum, quo ejus corpus, 

from the following passages, which vel dignitas, vel fama la?ditur dolo 

are quoted in Wallace's Principles of malo." (Voet, 1 Com. ad. ff. de 

the Law of Scotland, p. 509 : " In- Injiiriis.) 


Ill accordance with these established principles, Lord 
(Patrick) Robertson remarks, in the very latest Heraldic 
case that found its way into the Court of Session : " It 
is enough for the Lord Ordinary to be satisfied that the 
subject of the wearing of Coats of Arms is matter of legal 
right ; % and this being once settled, the dispute must be 
considered and determined with a due regard to the in- 
terest of the parties, just as much as if it involved large 
patrimonial interests." 1 

1 Note to Interlocutor in case of Cuninghame v. Cunyngham, 13th June 
1849, 11 I). 1139. 



IT is generally supposed that, in ancient times, every 
Knight who had taken part in the Holy Wars was 
allowed to use a Coat of Arms, but the number who 
assumed heraldic ensigns so rapidly increased, that it 
was soon found necessary to establish rules and regula- 
tions respecting their adoption. As of old the jus 
imayinum was only bestowed by Magistrates and other 
lawful Authorities, " ita hodie tan turn illi jus insignium 
vel armorum conferre possunt. Sunt enim Arma tesserae 
et symbola dignitatis, et nemo potest dignitatem sibi 
arrogare sine Principis licentia." 1 The Officers by 
whom these rules were carried into execution, under the 
authority of the Sovereign as the sole Fountain of Hon- 
our, were known by the general designation of Heralds, 2 

1 See Mackenzie's Science of Her- ancestors, without license from him- 

aldry, chap. ii. self or the officers of arms, excepting 

la the year 1417, King Henry v. such as had borne arms at Agincourt. 

issued a writ addressed to the sheriffs (See Sir H. N. Nicolas' History of 

of the several counties, forbidding all the Battle of Agincourt, p. 169.) 
manner of persons thenceforth to 2 " Herald est vox incertae racli- 

bear any arms not derived from their cis, sed vere similior derivatio est a 


who are believed to have been introduced into our own 
island from France where they were first incorporated, 
by Charles the Sixth, in 1406 and whose principal 
employment, in days of yore, consisted in the declara- 
tion of peace and war. Besides the recording of 
Armorial Bearings, they had to publish royal proclama- 
tions, to marshal processions, and to arrange the page- 
antry of coronations and other great public ceremonies ; 
and in the days of Chivalry their office was held in veiy 
high repute. The chief of their Society, styled "Kings-of- 
Arms," was solemnly crowned at his installation by the 
Sovereign himself, and, corresponding to the Armiger, or 
armour-bearer, of the Monarch and his Nobles, every 
Herald had his attendant in the shape of a Signifer or 
Pursuivant. 2 " Some authors," says Lord Bankton, " are 
of opinion that the principal of the Heralds are designed 
Kings- of- Arms, because in some measure they represent 
the Sovereign ; and a kind of ceremony of crowning 
them is used by the Lord Marshal of England, and they 
are adorned with a sort of royal ensigns ; and hence it 
is thought there ought to be but only one King-at- 
Arms. This is the case with us, but in England there 
are three." 3 

Saxon hejie, exercitus, et alb, famu- guished authors. (See Dio. Halicar. 

lus sive minister, quasi minister exer- Lib. ii. ; Cicero De Legibus, Lib. ii. ; 

citus vel armoruin." (Spel. Gloss. Livy, i. 24, 32 ; x. 45.) 

Herald.) 2 This is still the case in Scotland, 

Among the Romans, Heralds acted but in England and Ireland the nnm- 

as Priests, under the name of " Fed- ber of Heralds and Pursuivants do 

ales" and are said to have been in- not at present correspond, 

stituted by Numa Pompilius. Their 3 Institute of the Law of Scotland, 

office is described by several distin- Book iv. Tit. 6. 14. 


Both in England and Scotland, several of the chief 
Nobility appear to have had special Heralds or Pursui- 
vants at a pretty early period. Thus, the Percys, Earls 
of Northumberland, had a Herald bearing their titular 
designation, and a Pursuivant called "Esperance." In 
like manner, in an Exchequer Roll for the year 1460, 
we find a notice of " Endure," the Signifer or Pursuivant 
of the Earl of Craufurd ; while another Roll, four years 
later, bears a payment to " Endure Signifero num Linde- 
say Heraldo nuncupate." In England, at the beginning 
of the same century, the celebrated Scottish Earl of 
March (George Dunbar) had a Pursuivant under the 
title of " Shrewsbury," evidently given to him, according 
to Mr. Riddell, " from having been a main instrument of 
the victory gained there over Hotspur and his adherents, 
which fixed Henry iv. upon the throne." T 

The Heralds of England were incorporated, in 1484, 
by King Richard in., whose charter was confirmed by 
subsequent Sovereigns, and, in a code of regulations 
ordered by Queen Elizabeth, they are styled the " College 
of Heralds " an institution which exists in London at 
the present day. The head of the Corporation is the 
Duke of Norfolk, hereditary Earl Marshal, who has the 
right of nominating its various members, viz., three 
Kings of- Arms, six Heralds, and four Pursuivants. Of 
the three Kings-of-Arms, " Garter," who is the first and 
principal, was created by Henry v., in 1417, to attend 
on the illustrious Order of the same name ; and to him 

1 Law and Practice in Scottish See also Q'lentin Durward, vol. ii. 

Peerages, i. 265. chap. xvi. 


is intrusted, among other duties, the regulation of the 
Armorial Bearings of the Nobility and Knights of the 
Bath. The two others " Clarenceux " (formerly " Sur- 
roy " or South King) and " Norroy " (or North King) 
are called Provincial Kings, because their jurisdiction 
divides England into two Provinces ; and it is their 
office to arrange and register the Arms of all under the 
rank of Nobility. The Province of Clarenceux a name 
derived by some from the Duke of Clarence, younger 
son of Edward in. comprehends all to the South, and 
that of Norroy all to the North of the river Trent. 
Subordinate to the Kings-of-Arms are six Heralds, four 
Pursuivants, and a Eegistrar (who is one of the Heralds). 
The names of the Heralds are Windsor, Chester, Lan- 
caster, York, Richmond, and Somerset ; while the Pur- 
suivants are denominated Rougecroix, Blue-mantle, 
Rouge-Dragon, and Portcullis names probably derived 
from the badge or cognizance of the Sovereign during 
whose reign they were appointed. A fourth King-of- 
Arms, bearing the name of " Bath," was created in the 
year 1*725 for the service of that Order, and although not 
a member of the College of Heralds, he takes precedence 
next after " Garter." He was the same year constituted 
"Gloucester" King-of-Arms and "principal Herald of 
the parts of Wales ;" and is empowered (either alone or 
jointly with Garter) to grant Armorial Bearings to per- 
sons residing within that Principality. 1 

1 The ordinary occupations of the search, in which field, as well as 
officers of the College of Heralds iii general literature, many of them 
naturally leads to antiquarian re- have been greatly distinguished. The 


The head of the Office of Arms ill Ireland is " Ulster " 
King-of-Arms the title being derived from the Province 
of the same. name who acts under the direction of the 
Lord Lieutenant, and has the same connexion with the 
Order of St. Patrick as the principal English King-of-Arms 
has with the Order of the Garter. A King-of-Arms called 
" Ireland " appears to have existed as early as the reign 
of Richard u. After remaining uninterrupted for about 
a century, the succession is supposed to have become ex- 
tinct, and " Ulster" was created to supply the vacancy, 
by Edward vi., in 1552. The other officers in the Irish 
College are two Heralds styled Cork and Dublin, and 
four Pursuivants Athlone and three others called Pur- 
suivants of St. Patrick besides a Registrar (who is one 
of the Pursuivants) and a Serjeant-at-Arms. 

Many persons suppose that the Heralds of Scotland 
are of greater antiquity than those of the sister King- 
dom, and it is generally considered that " Norroy," the 
most ancient of the English Kings- of- Arms, had his origin 
in the border wars. In Scotland, as in Ireland, there is 
only one principal Herald or King-of-Arms, styled Lord 
Lyon, who derives his name and badge from the national 
escutcheon, to which circumstance allusion is made in the 
following lines of Sir Walter Scott : 

." So bright the King's armorial coat, 
That scarce the dazzled eye could note, 
In living colours, blazoned brave, 
The Lion, which his title gave." 1 

names of Camclen, Dugdale, and ancient institution to which they 

Ashmole, may be mentioned, as re- belonged. 

fleeting peculiar lustre on the l Marmion, Canto iv. 


Although the precise date of its institution is believed 
to be unknown, there can be no doubt that this office is 
of great antiquity. Chalmers 1 remarks tha^t there is no 
trace of the Lyon King or his Heralds at the memorable 
coronation of Alexander in. in 1249, of which Fordun 
gives a very minute account ; 2 nor was the same Sove- 
reign attended by any such officers when he met Edward 
I. at Westminster in the year 1278. As early, however, 
as the coronation of Robert n. at Holyrood Abbey, on 
the 23d of May 1371, we find the Lyon King-of-Arms 
occupying a very prominent position. After the Mon- 
arch's formal acceptance of the crown and the benedic- 
tion of the Bishops, " the Lyone King-of-Armes wes 
called one by the Lord Marishall, quho attendit one be 
the Herauldes, came in ther Coates, the Lyon satt doune 
at the Kinges feete, and the Herauldes went to ther 
stage prepared for them, and ther the Marishall, by the 
mouthe of the Bishope of St. Andrewes, did sueire the 
Lyon, quho being suorne, then did he put one hes croune, 
ordained him to weare for that solemnity." 3 

It appears from Rymer's Fcedera, that the signature 
of the Lyon King in 1474 was " Lyon R. Armorum," 
and eleven years later, " Lyon Kyng-of-Armes." lii 

1 Caledonia, i. 762, note. For a description of the ceremony, 

2 See also Nisbet's System of Her- in 1630, at the coronation of Sir 
aldry, vol. ii. part iv. p. 106. James Balfour, Lyon King-of-Arms, 

3 Heraldic and Antiquarian Tracts, by George Viscount Dupplin (after- 
by Sir James Balfour, Lyon King-at- wards Earl of Kimioull), Chancellor 
Arms, p. 37. Unfortunately, modern of Scotland, as Commissioner for 
researches have proved that Sir James King Charles I., see "Account of the 
Balfour's authority is not altogether Office of Heraulds" folio MS. Adv. 
unimpeachable. Lib. 34. 3. 22. 


Bishop Leslie's History of Scotland, he is termed " Leo 
fecialis" in 1513 ; while Buchanan describes him, in 
1559, as "princeps fecialis, vulgo Rex Armorum." 1 

That the Lyon King-of-Arms was at one time subor- 
dinate to the Marshal and Constable of Scotland, 
although not proved by any direct evidence, is now 
generally admitted ; 2 but his dependence on these great 
officers ceased at an early period, and the superiority of 
his rank to that of the English Kings-of-Arms arises 
from the circumstance of his holding office immediately 
from the Sovereign, by commission under the Great 
Seal ; whereas his brethren in the South are deputies to 
the Earl Marshal, under whose authority they act. So 
sacred was the Office of the Lyon formerly regarded, that 
in the year 1515 Lord Drummond was declared guilty 
of treason, and forfeited in Parliament, " eo quod 
Leonem Armorum Kegem, pugno violasset, dum eum de 
ineptiis suis admoneret;" and he was only restored, upon 
his humble submission, at the earnest solicitation of 
the King-at-Arms. Before the Revolution, in accord- 
ance with the custom already noticed, the Lyon King 
was solemnly crowned, on his admission into office, by 
the Sovereign or his Commissioner, in presence of the 
Nobility, Officers of State, and other distinguished per- 
sonages, after an appropriate Sermon in the Chapel 
Royal ; and his diadem was of the same form as the 
imperial crown of the Kingdom, not set with stones, but 

1 Lib. xvi. cap. xliii. in 1554, quoted in the Report on the 

2 See Decree by Sir David Lindsay Office and Court of the. Lord Lyon 
of the Mount, Lyon King-at-Arms, (1822), p. 5. 


only enamelled. At the coronation of Charles i. at 
Edinburgh, in 1633, the Lyon King " having a crown 
upon his head, carried in his hand the vessel containing 
the sacred oil : two Heralds walked on either side of 
him ; the trumpets sounded, and so they marched." 1 In 
virtue of his office and by Royal bounty, the Lyon was 
freed from all kinds of taxation an immunity, however, 
which, in common with certain other privileges, he has 
long ceased to enjoy. 

According to Nisbet, 2 the Lord Lyon has precedency 
of all Knights and Gentlemen within the Kingdom, not 
being Officers of State or Senators of the College of 
Justice. Sir George Mackenzie informs us that " the 
Lyon and the Usher of the Parliament (Ostiarius) do 
debate who shall go next to the King or his Commis- 
sioner, in Parliaments and Conventions, the Usher pre- 
tending that if he behoved to go after the Lyon, he 
behoved to go before the Heralds, and so he behoved to 
walk between the Lyon and his Brethren, which were 
not decent (though both in England and with us I find 
that several degrees of persons do, in all processions, 
walk between the Garter or Lyon a.rid his Brethren 
Heralds) : Likeas it is implied in the nature of the 
Usher's Office, that he should immediately usher him to 
whom he is Usher ; but in England I find that at the 
cavalcade, when his Majesty entered London, anno 1660, 
and at his Coronation, Garter King-of-Arms did walk in 
the midst, having the Mayor of London on his left hand, 

1 Harl. MSS., No. 4707, British 2 System of Hemldry, vol. ii. part 

Museum. iv. p. 166. 


and the Knight of the Black Rod on his right. And the 
author of Les Memoir es des Ambassadeurs tells us that, 
anno 1629, at the procession for celebration of that 
solemn peace betwixt France and Spain, the King-of- 
Arms did walk immediately before the French King 
le roy d'armes marchant immediatement devant le roy. 
I am likewise informed that, in England, the precedency 
runs thus : King-of-Arms, Usher of the Black Rod, 
Master of Ceremonies, and after him the Gentlemen of 
the Privy Chamber, etc." 1 

The Regalia of the Lord Lyon, which he only wears 
on solemn occasions, are a crown of gold, with a crim- 
son velvet cap, a gold tassel, and an ermine lining ; a 
long crimson velvet robe, doubled with silver-coloured 
Spanish taffeta, and embroidered, before and behind, 
with the national Arms in their proper tinctures ; a 
triple row of gold chains worn round the neck with an 
oval gold medal pendant thereto, exhibiting on one side 
the Royal bearing, and on the other St. Andrew with 
his cross, enamelled in proper colours ; and a baton of 
gold enamelled green, powdered with the badges of the 
Kingdom. At all other times he wears the oval gold 
medal or badge on his breast, suspended by a broad green 
ribbon. The Insignia of the Scottish Herald Office are, 
argent, a lion sejant, full-faced gules (being the crest of 
the national achievement), holding in the dexter pau a 
thistle slipped, vert, and in the sinister an escutcheon 
of the second ; on a chief, azure, a St. Andrew's cross of 
the first. These arms were carried, impaled with his own 

1 Treatise on Precedency, chap. viii. 



paternal coat, by Sir Alexander Erskine of Cambo, who 
was appointed Lord Lyon in 1681. Behind the shield, 

which was surmounted by an imperial crown and sur- 
rounded by the collar of the Order of the Thistle, were 
placed two batons semes of thistles, while St. Andrew 
crosses disposed in saltire appeared at the bottom and 
also at the top of the escutcheon, on either side of the 
crown. This official shield, however, is said to be no 
older than Sir Alexander's own time. The Seal appended 
to Patents of Arms by his father, Sir Charles Erskine, 
who was also Lord Lyon, bears only his paternal ensigns, 
and anciently the seal or badge used by our principal 
Heralds exhibited the Royal Arms of the Kingdom. 1 

The Lord Lyon has always held the appointment of 
King-of-Arms to the Order of the Thistle, at whose 
chapters and ceremonials he attends, calling over the 
names, and bearing the ensigns before the Knights-elect. 
As, however, these duties were considered to be scarcely 
consistent with the dignity of a Peer, King William iv. 
dispensed with their performance so long as the Earl of 

1 See Nisbet's System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part iii. p. 42. 


Kinnoull, the present Lord Lyon, held that office ; and 
accordingly they have been discharged either by deputy 
or by the Secretary to the Order. 1 The Lord Lyon re- 
ceives the sum of 70 at the election of every Knight of 
the Thistle, and Ms appointment as King-of-Arms to that 
illustrious Order is thus briefly expressed in the statutes 
of King James and Queen Anne : " The Lyon shall have 
robes and badges upon the shoulder conform to the Se- 
cretary. In his hand his staff of office, and about his 
neck his badge with the St. Andrew turned outwards." 

According to Noble, 2 at the Union of the two King- 
doms of England and Scotland, it was agreed that the 
Lord Lyon should be accounted the Second King-of- 
Arms in all public ceremonies, taking place next after 
Garter ; and such rank was always assigned to him dur- 
ing the reigns of Queen Anne and her successors, after 
the year 1707. The same author informs us that at the 
installation of Prince Henry, eldest son of James vi., 
when elected a Knight Companion of the Garter, the 
procession consisted of " alms-knights, prebends, pursui- 
vants, heralds, Ulster King-at-Arms, Lyon King-at-Arnis, 
and Clarenceux King-at-Arms (these two walking to- 
gether), the four new elected Knights, the other Knights 
Companions, Black Rod, Garter principal King-at-Arms, 
Registrar, Chancellor, and the Sovereign's representative 
leading the Prince in his hand." 3 A Scottish writer 
asserts that " the office and station of the Lord Lyon in 
Scotland, are similar to those of Garter King-at-Arms 

1 See Dodd's Manual of Din- 2 History of the College of Arms, 

nitifs, Privilege, and Precedence, p. p. 330. 
229. 3 Ibid 191> note 


in England;" and that "at the coronation of George 
in. the Lord Lyon and Garter Kings-at-Arms walked 
abreast, immediately preceding the Lord Great Cham- 
berlain of England." 1 In one of the articles of the Eoyal 
Ordinance, issued 17th May 1833, relative to the Order 
of St. Patrick, it is expressly declared that " in all cere- 
monials and assemblies, Ulster King-of-Arais shall have 
place immediately after the Lord Lyon King-of-Arms of 
Scotland." Sir Harris Nicolas remarks that " this regula- 
tion does not precisely fix Ulster's precedency, inasmuch 
as the position of the Lord Lyon in England has never 
been settled by any ordinance," 2 as contemplated by the 
24th Article of the Treaty of Union. Considering the 
great antiquity of the office, however, and the compara- 
tively high position of the Lord Lyon, to which we have 
already referred, in consequence of his holding his ap- 
pointment by Commission immediately from the Sove- 
reign, he appears to be fully entitled to rank next after 
Garter in all public ceremonies in England and Ireland ; 
while on this side of the Tweed, in accordance with other 
heraldic analogies, the official precedency of the two Ar- 
morial Kings ought unquestionably to be inverted. 3 

The power of regulating the use and assumption of 
Armorial Bearings, which was at one time vested in the 
Heralds jointly, is now exercised by the Lord Lyon 
alone. He discharges the duties of his office by a De- 
puty, nominated by himself and known by the designa- 

1 Arnot's History of Edinburgh, cedency, chap, viii., with reference to 
(1779), p. 492. the precedencj' of the Nobility of 

2 Orders of Knighthood,vol. iv. p.87. England and Scotland in the two 

3 See Mackenzie's Treatise on Pre- Kingdoms respectively. 


tion of " Lyon-Depute ;" and this devolution of his 
powers has been generally traced to the year 1662, when 
he first acquired the title of " Lord Lyon King of- Arms." 
Professor Lorimer, however, remarks that " the now pre- 
valent custom of speaking of the Lord Lyon, though 
not entirely destitute of the countenance of earlier usage, 
seems to have arisen from the accidental circumstance 
of the present holder of the office, and his immediate 
predecessor, being peers. In 1587, c. 46, he is through- 
out called ' the Lyon ' simply, though the Act speaks of 
' the Lords of Council and Session ;' the same is the case 
in 1592, c. 127. But in 1662, c. 53, an Act which never 
passed the Seals, and which was rescinded by 1663, c. 15, 
he is twice called the Lord Lyon, and he is so called 
also in the repealing statute. The old form, however, is 
reverted to in the important Act 1672, c. 21, by which 
the office and Court of ' the Lyon ' were placed on their 
present footing, after the Restoration." 1 Formerly Scot- 
land, like England, was divided into two provinces, the 
one on the north and the other on the south side of the 
Forth, and these provinces were under the management 
of two Deputies, appointed by the Lord Lyon for the 
execution of all the business of his office. The right of 
the Lyon King-of-Arms, or his Deputies, " to visit the 
whole Armes of Noble-men, Barons, and Gentle-men, 
etc./' is recognised by the Act 1672, c. 21, which is the 
latest Scottish statute on the subject of Armorial Bear- 
ings ; but it is by no means clear whether the term 

1 Handbook of the Law of Scotland, this useful manual holds the office of 
21 Edit. p. 441, note. The author of Lyon-Clerk. 


" Deputies " there used may not be understood to signify 
"his Brether Herauldes," as described in preceding sta- 
tutes. At all events, the practice of naming at least one 
Depute existed as far back as the end of the seventeenth 
century, and since the year 1760 it would appear that 
the duties of the Lord Lyon have been performed in 
part, if not altogether, by Deputy. 1 The Eeport of the 
Commissioners appointed to inquire into the state of the 
Lord Lyon's department, in 1822, concludes with a series 
of proposals for the regulation of the Lyon Court, in 
which some anxiety is expressed with reference to the 
appointment of a proper person to the office of Lyon- 
Depute. The Commissioners recommend " that, as the 
duties of the Lyon-Depute are of a judicial nature, it 
should be provided that the person to be appointed by 
the Lord Lyon as his Deputy should be a member of the 
Faculty of Advocates, of not less than three years' stand- 
ing at the Bar." 

Besides the Lyon-Depute, the Lord Lyon appoints a 
Clerk and Clerk-Depute, who both prefix the designation 
of " Lyon," a Procurator -Fiscal to sue before him, a 
Messenger to act as his Macer, and a Herald-painter. 
At certain periods between the years 1769 and 1819, 
the offices of Lyon-Depute and Lyon-Clerk were held by 
the same individual, but were again wisely disunited by 
the present Lord Lyon ; a proceeding highly approved 
of by the Commissioners, in the Eeport already referred 
to, from the obvious inexpediency of conjoining the 
duties of Judge and Clerk in one person, and thereby 

1 See Report on the Office and Court of the Lord Lyon, 1822, p. 22. 


removing, in a great measure, the proper guarantee of 
regular procedure. 

The Heralds attached to the Lyon Court are six in 
number, viz., Islay, Rothesay, Marchmont, Albany, Ross, 
and Snowdon, and they have their precedency according 
to the dates of their creation. All their designations, 
which are very ancient, are of local origin. Islay has his 
denomination from one of the Western Islands. Rothe- 
say has his title from the Castle of the same name, an 
ancient residence of the Scottish Kings, in the isle of 
Bute. Marchmont is so denominated, from the name 
by which Roxburgh Castle is known in our early his- 
tories. 1 Albany is named from the whole realm, called 
by the Highlanders " Albanach," and is said to have been 
in the habit of attending on the Dukes of Albany. Ross 
derives his title from the county of the same name, 
which was of old an appanage of the Crown. Snowdon 
is named from Snowdon Castle in the shire of Ross, 
another ancient residence of the Scottish Monarchs. 

In the 22d chapter of the folio MS. in the Advocates' 
Library, to which we have already referred, we find a 
series of elaborate instructions to Heralds as to " how 
they sould behave themselvis, and what they aught to 
doe and what not." Their negative duties are quaintly 
set forth under the nine following heads : 

1 " The same association which it around his shield, still attaches to 

led the unfortunate Prince (James the green mound which the Teviot- 

iii.), whose father fell in assaulting dale peasant shows as the site of 

Marchmont (or Roxburgh) Castle, to ' the Castle of Marchmound.' " 

adopt the name for one of his Her- Innes' Sketches of Early Kcotch His- 

alds, and his chivalrous son to blazon tory, p. 173. 


" ] . Not to haunt baiss aill housis, tavernes, etc. 

2. Not to be found drunke. 

3. Not to reveill secreits of business comititt to ther charge. 

4. Not to be sturrers of stryffe and descensione betwixt pairties. 

5. Not to refuse the comands of ther Prince and Superiors in 

matters belonging to ther office. 

6. Not to live idlie, but give themselvis to the studie of Herauldrie, 

Eloquence, Historic, and the Lawes, to the search of Records, 
Monuments, and Antiquities, and to other verteous exercises. 

7. Not to be followers of false suits and forgeries by law. 

8. Not buyers, mainteners or followers of plees against Orphanis and 

Widowes or poore people. 

9. Lastlie, they ought not to doe or committ ony offence or cryme, 

quherby they may ather blemish the honor and dignitie of their 
heigh calling, or stain e the Royall coatt of their Soverane Lord 
and Maister." 

As in the case of the Heralds^ the Pursuivants are also 
six in number, and bear the names of Kintyre, Dingwall, 
Carrick, Bute, Ormond, and Unicorn, all being local de- 
nominations, with the exception of the last, which is 
probably derived from the Supporters of the Royal Arms 
of Scotland. At the end of the fifteenth century there 
appear to have been only Jive of each class, Lyon Herald 
being then the designation of one of the former ; but 
since that period both their names and number have 
been the same as at present. 

" Heralds and Pursuivants, by name 
Bute, Islay, Marchmont, Rothsay, came, 
In painted tabards, proudly showing 
Gules, Argent, Or, and Azure glowing, 

Attendant on a King-at-Arms, 
Whose hand the armorial truncheon held, 
That feudal strife had often quelled, 
When wildest its alarms." 1 
1 Marmion, Canto iv. 


Both the Heralds and Pursuivants receive their commis- 
sion from the Lord Lyon, usually for life ; and whatever 
may have been the case in former times, the only duty 
now incumbent upon them is attendance at Royal pro- 
clamations, coronations, and other public solemnities. 

Anciently, there appear to have been three different 
kinds of Robes for heraldic officials, the " Tunique or 
Dalmatique " having been peculiar to the King-of-Arms, 
the " Palique " to the Herald, and the " Coat of Arms " 
to the Pursuivant. The following entry occurs .in the 
Lord High Treasurer's Accounts, under the year 1488 : 
" ix. Coyt Annouris for the Harroldis and Purcyfantis." 
" As for the moderne fashione of coates used in the 
realme of Scotland by the King of Armes, Heraulds, and 
Pursevants, they ar for modell all on, eftir the Dalmatic 
fashion, and differs in this that the King of Amies Coat 
is of Cloth of Tishew and Velvet ritchlie embroydred 
with Gold and arrayed with Pearles, crowned with the 
Imperiall Croune of Great Brittain and doubled with 
crimpsone satin. The Heraulds coates ar onlie of Satin e 
partialie embroydred with purple and silk and doubled 
with taffety, adorned with the single escutcheone onlie. 
The Pursevants Coates ar of Damask onlie paintit by 
Paintirs pincell with the single escutcheone in inetall and 
collor and doubled with collor." 1 

The present Tabards of the Scottish Heralds and Pur- 
suivants were supplied as far back as the year 1820, and 
have accordingly seen a good deal of service. They are 
embroidered with the Imperial Arms, including the 

1 Account off}* Office nf ff f ,<>./<!, MS. Adv. Lib. 34. 3. 22. 


ensign 8 of Hanover. The official Robes of the Lord 
Lyon are believed to have been burnt in the fire which 
occurred at Dupplin Castle upwards of thirty years 


Attached to this department of the Office of Arms are 
six Trumpeters, who are supposed to be functionaries of 
comparatively modern origin. Mention is made of them, 
in connexion with the Heralds and Pursuivants, in the 
account of the creation of the Marquises of Hamilton 
and Huntly, on the 17th of April 1599. 

The Macers were formerly reckoned among the Of- 
ficers-at-Arms, and in early times were placed after the 
Pursuivants, but from the institution of the Court of 
Session in 1532, they took precedence of these func- 
tionaries, and having no longer any connexion with the 
Lyon Office, they attend .solely upon the Judges of the 
Supreme Court. 

After the Pursuivants are now ranked the Messengers- 
at-Arms, of whom there is a certain number in nearly 
every shire of the kingdom, at present amounting in all 
to about one hundred ; and it is their duty to execute 
the process and letters of the Superior Courts. They are 
appointed and removed by the Lord Lyon, and it is 
clear from an Act passed towards the end of the six- 
teenth century (1587, c. 46), containing various provi- 
sions respecting these officers, that before that period he 
exercised control over them, both as to their admission 
and the trial of complaints against them. 

The authority and jurisdiction. of the Scottish King- 
at-Arms is, therefore, of a twofold character, embracing, 


first, the superintendence and regulation of all matters 
connected with Armorial Bearings ; and, secondly, the 
nomination and control of the whole body of Messengers- 
at-Arms, in which last respect he may be regarded as 
essentially at the head of the civil branch of the execu- 
tive department of the Law. Accordingly, it has been 
suggested that it might deserve consideration whether 
it would not be expedient, with a view at once to give 
unity of management to the entire department, and to 
relieve the Sheriff of all but judicial duties, to impose 
upon the Lord Lyon and his Officers the execution of 
process of every kind, and the whole ministerial powers 
of the Sheriff, in so far as these are executive or 
auxiliary to the Courts of Law. 1 

1 See Encyclopedia Britannica, 7th edition, xix. 761. 



IN former days the Lyon King-of-Arms appears to 
have refused the use of a Coat Armorial to none who 
were able to maintain a horse with furniture for the 
service of the Sovereign : " Dummodo heretici nori 
sint, contra fidem, ex illegitimo toro prognati, vel ex 
ignobili sanguine oriundi, sed viri probi et honesti 
riominis." 1 Whatever may have been the case at an 
earlier period, the Lyon had an ordinary jurisdiction in 
matters of Heraldry before the middle of the sixteenth 
century, subject, probably, to the Constable or Marshal. 
This is clearly proved by the original Register of the 
Arms of the Nobility and Barons of Scotland, by Sir 
David Lindsay of the Mount, Lyon King-of-Arms, which 
is still preserved in the Library of the Faculty of Advo- 
cates, and of which a fac- simile was published about 
thirty years ago, under the able superintendence of Mr. 
David Laing. This curious manuscript, which appears 
to have been emblazoned about the year 1542, is authen- 

1 See NisbeVs Heraldry, vol. ii. pt. iv. p. 166. 

STATUTE OF 1592. 43 

ticated as the official Eecord, by the following attestation 
at the end of the volume : 

" This Booke and Register of Amies, done by Sir 
David Lindesay of the Mount, Lyone King-of-Annes, 
Regn. Ja. v., contains cvi. leaves, which register was 
appro vene be the Lordis of his Majesties most honorable 
Privie Counsale at Halierude house, ix. Decem. 1630. 
(Signed) SIR JAMES BALFOUR, Lyone. 

THOMAS DRYISDALE, Ilay Herald, Register" 

The irregularities in the bearing of Coat Armour, 
which are believed to have resulted from the gradual 
disuse of Seals as a documentary solemnity, towards the 
close of the sixteenth century, had in all probability an 
important influence in inducing the Scottish Parliament 
to make some statutory provisions upon the subject. 
Accordingly, the first legislative enactment which directly 
bestows a jurisdiction upon the Lyon in questions of 
Armorial Bearings is the Statute 1592, c. 125, 1 by which 
he is empowered to inspect the Arms of all Noblemen, 
Barons, and Gentlemen, to distinguish them with proper 
differences, to matriculate them in his Books and Re- 
gisters, " to put inhibition to all the common sort of 
people, not worthy by the law of Arms to bear any signs 
armorial ;" and, finally, to enforce certain penalties 
against those persons who presumed to use heraldic 
ensigns without lawful authority. 

The jurisdiction of the Lyon King in matters of 
Heraldry was more fully set forth in an Act passed after 

1 Folio Edit. c. 29. 

44 ACTS OF 1662 AND 1672. 

the Restoration (1662, c. 53), by which he was declared 
to be the only competent judge in all questions respect- 
ing the distinction of Arms to be worn by the younger 
branches of families, of whose descent he was authorized 
to take evidence ; and also empowered " to punish, 
according to the Acts of Parliament made against the 
bearers of false arms/' all those who ventured to assume 
any additions to their Coats Armorial without his appro- 
bation. Besides other provisions, the same statute rati- 
fied and confirmed a grant by Charles I. to the Lyon 
King-of-Arms, of certain fees and casualties payable at 
the funerals of Prelates and Noblemen, and conferred on 
the said Lyon and his successors in office full exemption 
from ah 1 taxation, whether then subsisting or to be im- 
posed in time coming. It is unnecessary, however, to 
make any further observations upon this statute, as it 
was repealed in the following year (1663, c. 15). 

The next legislative enactment on the subject of 
Armorial Bearings, 1672, c. 2 1, 1 renews and confirms the 
powers granted in 1592, and makes provision for their 
more effectual execution, by commanding all persons 
who use Ensigns Armorial to send an account of the 
same, within a year from the publication of the Act, 
with authenticated certificates of their use of the said 
ensigns, as well as of their descent, in order, as formerly, 
that the Lyon may distinguish their Arms with proper 
differences and matriculate them in his Books. This 
statute further expressly authorizes the Lyon to give 
Armorial Bearings " to virtuous and well-deserving per- 

1 Folio Edit. c. 47- 


sous," and to furnish extracts, or authenticated copies, of 
Arms, under his hand and Seal of Office, for which cer- 
tain payments are appointed to be made, according to 
the quality of the Bearer. It also remits any penalties 
that may have been incurred previous to the date of its 
enjoined publication, and after declaring that the Lyon's 
Register " shall be respected as the true and unrepeal- 
able rule of all arms and bearings in Scotland," it repeats, 
with some modification, the pains which are denounced 
against the wearers of false arms by the Act of 1592. 

By these two statutes (1592 and 1672), the jurisdic- 
tion of the Lyon King in questions of Armorial Bearings 
is fully established ; and, accordingly, for a period of 
two hundred and seventy years, he has been legally 
empowered to regulate their use and assumption. His 
authority is reserved entire in the nineteenth article of 
the Treaty of Union, by which, after a notice of the 
Court of Session and other Supreme Judicatures, it is 
distinctly declared " that all other Courts now in being 
within the Kingdom of Scotland do remain ;" while the 
twenty -fourth article provides " that the quartering the 
arms, and the rank and precedency of the Lyon King-at- 
Arms of the Kingdom of Scotland, as may best suit the 
Union, be left to her Majesty." Finally, it may be stated 
upon this point, that the Lord Lyon's authority in ques- 
tions of Armorial Bearings has been expressly sustained 
by more than one decision of the Court of Session. 

It is important, however, to ascertain whether or not 
the jurisdiction of the Lord Lyon, in matters of Arms, 
admits of any limitation. There is no very distinct de- 


finition of his authority in any of our institutional 
writers. Lord Stair is altogether silent upon the subject, 
and Erskine merely states that " in the list of inferior 
judges may also be placed the Lyon King of Arms," and 
that " the extent of his jurisdiction is set forth in several 
statutes," of which he enumerates the principal provi- 
sions. 1 " The Court: of Session," says Lord Kames, 
" hath an original jurisdiction in matters of property, 
and in everything that comes under the notion of pecu- 
niary interest. But this Court hath not an original 
jurisdiction in matters of rank and precedency, nor in 
bearing arms. Controversies of this kind belong to the 
jurisdiction of the Lord Lyon." He adds, moreover, 
that "to determine a right of Peerage, is the exclusive 
privilege of the House of Lords." 2 In the language of 
Erskine, "the jurisdiction of the Lords of Session in 
civil matters is, 1st, Universal as to extent, and 2dly, 
Supreme in degree. As to the first, it is expressly de- 
clared to extend to all civil causes, 1537, c. 36. And 
though private right or property is, without doubt, the 
chief and most proper subject of their jurisdiction, they 
are also competent to several questions wdiich carry no 
pecuniary or patrimonial interest, e.g., to elections of 
magistrates of boroughs, of commissioners of supply, 
etc." 3 That the Lord Lyon possesses a ministerial power 
in questions of Armorial Bearings has always been uni- 
versally acknowledged, but that his jurisdiction is priva- 

1 Institute of the Law of Scotland, 1761), p. 211. 

Book i. Tit. 4. 32, 33. 3 Institute of the Law of Scotland, 

2 Law Tracts, 2d Edit, (pub- Book i. Tit. 3. 18. 


live (that is, final and exclusive) has for some time at 
least been virtually denied. From the Earl Marshal of 
England, the head of the " College of Heralds," it is com- 
petent to appeal to the Sovereign in Council ; and the 
language of at least one of the Scottish statutes already 
referred to, 1 as well as the attestation at the end of Sir 
David Lindsay's Register of Arms, seem to lead to the 
conclusion that a similar rule formerly existed in Scot- 
land. Speaking of the Scottish Privy Council, the 
author just quoted informs us that they " came at last, 
besides their powers in matters of state and public police, 
to have a fixed supreme jurisdiction in all questions of 
wrong, for which no redress could be had in the common 
courts of law, and in all causes where the public peace 
was concerned. Thus, they inquired into and punished 
violent encroachments upon possession, all acts import- 
ing oppression, concussion, or contempt of the laws or of 
public authority ; they decreed alimony to pupils, and to 
wives barbarously used by their husbands ; and judged 
in many other questions of that sort where summary 
proceeding was necessary. These powers continued in 
the Scottish Privy Council till an Act passed soon after 
the Union, 6 Anne, c. 6, whereby that court was abolished, 
and sunk into the Privy Council of Britain, which, for 
the future, was declared to have no other powers than 
the English Privy Council had at the time of the Union. 
What the powers of a British Privy Council are, it does 
not much import a Scottish lawyer to know : it is cer- 
tain, that they have no judicial powers that can affect 

1 1662, c. 53. See also 1672, c. 21. 


Scotsmen; for, though they may commit them- to cus- 
tody for crimes against the State, and examine them, 
they have no right of trial." 1 Under these circumstances, 
therefore, the right of appeal to the Privy Council from 
the judgments of the Lord Lyon, if it ever did exist, 
ceased at the Union, at which period, according to 
Erskine, 2 the extraordinary powers of the Scottish Privy 
Council were transferred to the Court of Session. At all 
events, there -can be no doubt that, for some time past, 
the Court of Session has regarded the jurisdiction of the 
Lord Lyon as subject to its review and control ; 3 but it 
is equally certain that the proceedings of that Judge, in 
so far as he grants Armorial Bearings, cannot be dis- 
turbed by the Supreme Court, unless he thereby invades 
the rights of others. Accordingly, that tribunal will not 
entertain an action of reduction of a matriculation of 
Arms, at the instance of a party who does not claim 
them for himself, upon the mere ground " that the Arms 
blazoned are not such as the defender (or person chal- 
lenged) is entitled to bear." 4 

Thus, about the middle of last century, the Laird of 
Dundas complained to the Lyon that Dundas of Fingask 
had got from the Lyon's predecessor, in the year 1 744, a 
grant of armorial bearings, to which he and his ancestors 
had right many ages before. The matter was brought 

1 Institute of the Law of Scotland, Fisc. of Lyon Office v. Murray, 24th 
Book i. Tit. 3. 9. June 1778. Mor. 7656. Cuning- 

2 Ibid. 23. See also Shand's hame v. Cunyngham, 13th June 1849, 
Practice of the Court of Session, i. 41, 1 1 D. 1 1 39. 

et seq. 

3 See Dundas v. Dundas, 22d Jan. 4 M'Donnell v. Macdonald, 20th 
1762. Brown's $upt. v. 493. Proc. Jan. 1826, 4 S. 371. 


before the Court by aii advocation at the instance of 
Fingask. Dundas disputed the competency, but his 
plea was soon abandoned ; and on the merits, the Lords, 
on the 22d of January 1762, pronounced this interlo- 
cutor : " Find that George Dundas of Dundas, heir- 
male of James Dundas of that Ilk, who was forfeited in 
the year 1449, but afterwards rehabilitate, has the sole 
right to use and bear the Coat of Arms belonging to 
Dundas of that Ilk, as matriculated in the .Kegister, 
authenticated by the subscription of Sir James Balfour, 
then Lord Lyon ; and find that the Coat of Arms ob- 
tained, in 1744, by Thomas Dundas, Defender, from the 
late Lord Lyon, was obtained by obreption, and that 
he has 110 right to use the same ; and therefore ordain the 
said Coat of Arms to be recalled and expunged from the 
Lord Lyon's Books, reserving to the said Thomas Dun- 
das to apply for a new Coat of Arms as accords : Find 
the Defenders, Thomas Dundas of Fingask and Thomas 
Dundas of Quarrel, liable to the Pursuer in the expense 
of the complaint before the Lord Lyon's Court, and in 
the expense of this process of advocation. And to this 
interlocutor the Lords adhered." 

On the other hand, however, in the later case of 
M'Donnell v. Macdonald, to which we have already 
referred, the Court dismissed, as incompetent, an action 
of reduction of a matriculation of Arms, in which the 
Pursuer (M'Donnell of Glengarry) did not set forth that 
he had a right to the Arms in question. The summons 
concluded for reduction of the matriculation of the Arms 
of "Reginald George Macdonald of Clan Ranald, Esquire, 



Captain and Chief of Clan Ranald," as entered in the 
Lyon Kegister on the 9th of August 1810, on the 
grounds that " the Arms blazoned were not such as the 
defender is entitled to bear," and that the defender " is 
not chief of Clan Ranald." The pursuer designed him- 
self " of Glengarry " and " heir-male in general duly 
served and retoured to ^Eneas, Lord M'Donnell and 
Arros, who was recognised by the King's Commissioner 
and Privy Council, in 1672, as Chief of the Name and 
Clan of M c Donald," and stated that the matriculation 
sought to be reduced was to his " great hurt and preju- 
dice/' He did not, however, set forth that he was the 
Chief of Clan Ranald, or that he was entitled to bear the 
Arms which had been matriculated as the ensigns armo- 
rial of the defender ; and moreover, in the year 1797, he 
himself had matriculated Arms which were essentially 

But apart altogether from the right of the Court of 
Session to review, in certain instances, the judgments of 
the Lord Lyon, it is important to observe that not above 
six or seven heraldic cases are reported as having occu- 
pied the attention of that supreme Tribunal from the 
period of its institution to the present time. Of these, 
the most remarkable have already been referred to, and 
to some of them it will be necessary to advert more fully 
by and bye. Practically, therefore, from the very rare 
occurrence of such cases in the Court of Session, it may 
be pretty safely asserted that the general settlement of 
heraldic questions is left and very properly to the 
Lyon King-of-Arms. 

ANALYSIS OF 1592, C. 12-~>. 51 

The special jurisdiction of the Lord Lyon in mutters 
of Heraldry will, of course, be best ascertained by a care- 
ful examination of the two Statutes already referred to, 
of which it has been thought advisable to introduce the 
subjoined analysis : 

(I.) ANALYSIS of ACT 1592, c. 125. (JAC. vi.) 
" Concerning the Office of Lyon King-of-Anns and his brother Heralds." 

I. PREAMBLE. In which is set forth the great abuse among the Lieges 

in the bearing and usurpation of Arms, so that Gentlemen of 
Blood and those descended of Noble Stock and Lineage can- 
not be distinguished. 

II. PROVISIONS. Full power granted to the Lyon Kiug-of-Arnis and 

his brother Heralds : 

1. To visit the whole Arms of Noblemen, Barons, and Gentlemen, 
borne and used within the realm, in order, 

1st, To distinguish and discern them with congruent differences. 
2d, To matriculate them in their Books and Registers. 

2. To put inhibition to all the common sort of people, not worthy by 
the law of Arms to bear any Signs-Armorial. 

III. PENALTIES for each contravention of the Act : 

1. Escheat to the Sovereign of all goods and gear whereon Arms 
unlawfully assumed are found graven or painted. 

2. Payment of one hundred pounds to the Lyon and his brother 
Heralds ; and failing payment, 

3. Incarceration in the nearest prison, during the pleasure of the 
Lyon. 1 

(II.) ANALYSIS OF ACT 1672, c. 21. (CAR. n.) 
" Concerning the Privileges of the Office of Lyon King-at-Amns" 
I. PREAMBLE, containing : 

1. Reference to the provisions of Act 1592. 

1 This Statute also contains pro- enjoins all civil magistrates, when 

visions regarding the execution of- required by the Lyon, to concur 

letters of treason, and the admission with him in carrying out the various 

and number of officers -at -arms ; and powers conferred upon his office. 

52 ANALYSIS OF 1672, (J. 21. 

'2. Notice of continued irregularities iu the assumption of Armorial 
Bearings. (Followed by a general ratification of the Act of 


1. Within a year after the enjoined publication of the Act through- 
out the Kingdom, all Prelates, Noblemen, Barons, and Gentlemen, 
who make Use of any Signs- Armorial, (1 .) To bring or send to 
the clerk of the jurisdiction where they dwell, or to the Lyon- 
Clerk iu Edinburgh, an account of the Arms they are accustomed 
to bear ; (2.) Stating also whether they are descendants of any 
family, the Arms of which they use, and from what brother of 
the family they happen to be sprung ; (3.) With certificates from 
persons of honour, Noblemen or Gentlemen of quality, anent the 
verity of their having and using the Arms they claim, and of their 
descent as aforesaid, to enable the Lyon King-of-Arms, 

1st, To distinguish the said Arms with congruent differences. 
2d, To matriculate the same in his Books and Registers. 

2. The Lyon to give Arms to virtuous and ivell-deserviny persons. 

3. To furnish extracts (or authenticated copies) of all registered 
Arms, expressing their blazoning, under his hand and seal of 
office, the payments for said extracts being : 

By Prelates and Noblemen, . . . 20 merks. 
Knights and Barons, . . . 10 
All other persons, .... o ... 

4. Remission of any penalties that may have been incurred previous 
to the publication of this Act. 

0. The Lyou's official Register to be respected as the true and unre- 
pealable rule of all arms and bearings in Scotland. 

III. PENALTIES for the unauthorized use of Arms after the lapse of a 
year from the publication of this Act : 

1 . Escheat to the Sovereign of all moveable goods and gear whereon 
the said Arms are engraven or otherwise represented. 

2. Payment of one hundred pounds, toties quoties, to the Lyon. 1 

1 This Statute concludes with cer- Lyoii and his brother Heralds of all 

tain provisions respecting the sub- the privileges secured by the laws of 

scription of titles and names, and the kingdom, and enjoyed by former 

with a general ratification to the practice. 


Both of these Statutes recognise a twofold classifica- 
tion of the lieges, viz., those who are, and those who are 
not, worthy by the law of Arms to use heraldic ensigns. 
The main object of the first enactment was to check their 
unwarrantable assumption by " the common sort of 
people,'' and, in consequence of continued irregularities, 
it became necessary to make further provisions in the 
year 1672. 

The persons worthy by the law of Arms to use Armo- 
rial Bearings were : 

1. Those who were entitled to do so prior to any 

statutory enactment on the subject. 

2. Virtuous and well-deserving people, on whom the 

Lyon was authorized to bestow the privilege. 
1. In days of yore, the right to bear Armorial En- 
signs depended either on immemorial custom, which has 
always in itself been deemed sufficient, or on direct 
Royal concession, the Sovereign being then, as now, the 
chief fountain of honour. 1 From the language of the 
Statutes now under consideration, it would appear that, 
prior to their enactment, this right was exercised by all 
Noblemen, Barons, and Gentlemen, in addition to whom 
the Act of 1672 specifies Prelates, and also makes inci- 
dental allusion to Knights, who are classified along with 
Barons. Of these degrees of rank, it is only necessary 
to define the Barons and Gentlemen. Barons, or Lairds, 

1 Although the power of granting rendered by the Sovereign, and ac- 

Armorial Bearings has long been cordingly all patents of nobility 

exercised by officers duly appointed either specify the appropriate heral- 

for that purpose, the privilege of die ensigns, or command them to be 

direct concession has never been snr- furnished by the King-at-Arms. 


were such as held their lands immediately of the Crown, 
and possessed both a civil and criminal jurisdiction. 
They sat in the Scottish Parliament, along with the 
Nobles (or greater Barons), until the year 1427, when 
their attendance was dispensed with, on condition of 
their sending representatives from each county, who 
were designed " Commissioners of the Schires." In 
modern times their jurisdiction was greatly reduced, and 
is now seldom if ever exercised. 1 Gentlemen were such 
as were descended from " worshipful houses," and were 
distinguished from citizens, merchants, artisans, and 
others, who were considered to occupy an inferior rank. 
Camden informs us that of old there was a distinction 
between Gentlemen of Blood and Gentlemen of Coat- 
armour, and that the third from him who first bore 
coat-armour was to all effects and purposes a Gentle- 
man of Blood. The preamble of the Act of 1592 makes 
special mention of Gentlemen of Blood and those de- 
scended of noble stock and lineage, who are clearly 
presumed to be entitled to use Armorial Bearings. 

Certain arbitrary devices, usually termed " merchants' 
marks," were assumed by persons of the middle ranks 
not entitled to coat-armour ; and rude monograms were 
adopted as characteristic signs, by the early painters, 
printers, and others, in allusion to their peculiar pur- 
suits. 2 In " The Duty and Office of an Herald," by F. 

1 For notices of the Minor Barons, Heraldry, chap, xlvii. ; and Paper by 
see Lives of the Lindsays, i. 57 and Mr. Albert Way, in the Gentleman's 
147. Magazine, vol. xliii., New Series, p. 

2 See Lower's Curiosities of Heral- 270 {1855.) 
dry, p. 41 ; Newton's Display nf 


Thynne, Lancaster Herald, 1605, the officer is directed 
" to prohibit merchants and others to put their names, 
marks, or devices, in escutcheons or shields, which belong 
to gentlemen bearing arms, and none others." The prac- 
tice in question appears to have prevailed to some extent 
in Scotland during the seventeenth century, and a strange 
combination of heraldic and other devices is occasion- 
ally to be found within the same escutcheon. Thus, on 
a flat tombstone in the Greyfriars' burying-ground at 
Perth, commemorating the death, in the year 1618, of 

" ane honorabil woman Helen Colt spouse of Henry 
Anderson," a heraldic shield occurs charged with a couped 
saltire and a mullet, in addition to another curious figure 
the saltire and mullet forming the principal charges 
in the armorial ensigns of the surname of Anderson. 

Both of the Statutes under consideration, while they 
acknowledge the general right and title of Noblemen, 
Barons, and Gentlemen to use heraldic ensigns, expressly 
authorize the Lyon to distinguish all Arms borne within 
the kingdom, "with congruent differences," and there- 
after to matriculate them in his official Register. For 


the accomplishment of these objects, he is empowered, 
l>y the Act of 1592, to visit the whole Arms of Noble- 
men, Barons, and Gentlemen ; while the later Statute 
enjoins all such persons, who make use of any signs- 
armorial, to bring or send an account of the same, 
accompanied by duly authenticated certificates of their 
descent, either to the clerk of the jurisdiction within 
which they reside, or to the Lyon-Clerk in Edinburgh. 
This latter provision applies more especially to the 
Cadets of families, of which only the Chief is entitled to 
wear the simple arms, without abatement. The pre- 
amble of the Act of 1672 sets forth, " amongst the many 
irregularities of these late times," not only that numerous 
persons have adopted Armorial Ensigns " who should 
bear none," but also that " many of these who may in 
law bear, have assumed to themselves the Arms of their 
Chief, without distinctions, or Arms which were not 
carried by them or their predecessors." To these younger 
branches of families the Lyon is commanded to assign 
suitable marks of Cadency, in conformity with the 
opinion of learned Doctors, to the following effect : 
" Non solum potestas conferendi nova insignia, sed 
potestas augendi, mutandi, diminuendi, et confor- 
mandi insignia vetera, est penes Principem et ejus 
Heraldos." 1 

2. As the grand fountain of honour, the Sovereign 
has at all times exercised the prerogative of conferring 
Armorial Bearings without any restriction, " although," in 
the words of Sir George Mackenzie, "he cannot properly 

1 Mackenzie's Science of Heraldry, chap. ii. 


make a Gentleman, for that comes by Blood and not by 
Patent." 1 As a general rule, however, the intervention 
of the Lyon is considered necessary, and accordingly, by 
both Statutes, he is allowed to give Arms to certain per- 
sons who do not inherit them from their ancestors. In 
this respect, he appears to have possessed an indirect 
power under the Act of 1592, which authorized him "to 
put inhibition to all the common sort of people not 
worthy, by the law of Arms, to bear any signs-armorial." 
But the later enactment expressly declares that he may 
grant Arms to " virtuous and well-deserving persons," 
the interpretation of these rather ambiguous words being 
left to his own discretion. A similar provision has long 
been contained in the Lord Lyon's patent of creation. 
Sir Charles Erskine of Carnbo, for example, who was 
appointed King-at-Arms in 1663, is in vested "plena 
potestate, libertate, licentia, et auctoritate, personis vir- 
tute prceditis, et de nobis bene meritis, diplomata 
armorum, secundum ordinem et constitutiones eatenus 
praescriptas, concedendi." An elaborate dissertation on 
the persons who are worthy to use Armorial Bearings, or 
rather, on the signification of Civil or Politic, as distin- 
guished from Moral, "Nobility," 2 will be found in the 
second chapter of Sir George Mackenzie's Science oj 
Heraldry. That learned author considers that the right 
to bear Armorial Ensigns extends to Soldiers, Ecclesi- 
astics, Orators, and Laureate Poets ; but not, at least in 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. ii. more than one illustrious family 

2 This nice distinction of civil " sola virtus nobilitat." 
lawyers repudiates the motto of 


every case, to Heritors of Land, and never to the mere 
possessors of Wealth. He shows, moreover, that while 
the privilege is extinguished by infamy and the exercise 
of mean trades (viles et mechanicas artes), it cannot be 
lost by those who follow liberal professions, as Advocates 
and Physicians, and still less in consequence of poverty, 
" even in the longest course of time." 1 

Notwithstanding the terms of the Act of 1592, no 
regular system of armorial visitation appears to have 
been adopted by the Heralds of Scotland. In England, 
on the other hand, the practice extended over a consider- 
able period, and resulted in the collection of a large 
amount of heraldic and genealogical information. The 
most ancient English Visitation on record is said to 
have been made at the commencement of the fifteenth 
century; but the earliest Visitation, by virtue of a Royal 
Commission, took place during the reign of Henry VIIL, 
in the year 1528-9, and embraced the counties of Glou- 
cester, Worcester, Oxford, Wilts, Berks, and Stafford. 
From that time till the end of the seventeenth century, 
the different counties were visited at irregular intervals, 
and the Registers made during these visitations contain 
the pedigrees and arms of the Nobility and Gentry, 
authenticated by the heads of their respective families. 
Several of these important records are now lost or scat- 
tered, but many of them are still preserved among the 
archives of the College of Arms and at the British 
Museum. Others are to be found in the Bodleian as 
well as in various College libraries, while not a few are 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. ii. 


in private custody. 1 The Visitation of the county of 
York, in 1665-6, by the celebrated Dugdale (then Norroy 
and afterwards Garter King-of-Arms) was printed in 
1859 as the thirty-sixth volume of the publications of 
the Surtees Society. It appears from the Preface that 
" nearly one-third of the whole number of gentry whom 
the Herald called upon to appear before him with proofs 
of their arms and pedigrees treated his summons with 
neglect/' Two years after the Visitation, he issued a 
precept, to which a list of these families was annexed, 
formally interdicting them against using their arms and 
titles. The list contains "a few of the well-known 
ancient gentry of the county, besides many heads of 
families, whose descendants at this day would have re- 
joiced had they then placed their pedigrees upon record. 
But the majority of the names were probably then of 
little note, and are now wholly lost sight of." 2 

Besides declaring that the Lyon's Official Register is 
to be respected as the true and unrepealable rule of all 

1 See Sims' Manual for the Genea- "For proofe of these armes, he 
logist, etc. A Catalogue of the voucheth his father's seale, who died 
Visitations in the British Museum at the age of 88 years." 

was printed by Sir. N. H. Nicolas in " Per me W. Dugdale Norroy con- 

1 825, and an Index to the pedigrees cessa." 

and arms contained in about 250 of " This family have for many ages 

the principal MSS. mentioned therein used their armes with supporters, 

was published by Mr. Sims in 1849. viz., an antelope and a tyger," etc. 

2 After the blazon of the arms and " To expect a certificate from Mr. 
before the pedigree, such entries as A. of B. that this gentleman is of his 
the following are of frequent occur- family." 

rence : " It appears that the grant of the 

" No proofe made of these armes." armes was to Sir A. B. and his de- 

" Qu. for proofe of these armes ? " scendants, therefore these have no 

" Respite given for exhibiting y e right to them." 

armes." ( Wit ere no blazon entered.) 


Arms and Bearings in Scotland, the Act of 1672 contains 
an additional provision with regard to Extracts (or 
authenticated copies) of the same, under the hand and 
seal of the Lyon, which he is authorized to furnish on 
payment of certain fees already enumerated. 

The Penalties imposed by both enactments, for the un- 
lawful assumption of Armorial Bearings, are almost 
identical, being 

1. Escheat to the Sovereign of all goods and gear 
whereon " false Arms " are found graven, painted, or 
otherwise represented. 

2. Payment of one hundred pounds, toties quoties, to 
the Lyon. Failing payment of the fine, the Act of 1592 
ordains incarceration in the nearest prison " during the 
pleasure of the Lyon," but this alarming alternative is 
not repeated in the later Statute, which, in a remarkable 
spirit of leniency, also remits any penalties that may 
have been incurred " before the proclamation to be issued 

These remarks may be brought to a conclusion by the 


of the duties and powers of the Lyon King-at-Arms, 
in heraldic matters, under the Statutes of 1592 and 
1672 : 

1. To assign suitable differences to the Cadets, or 
younger branches of families having a right to Armorial 

2. To record the Genealogies of persons descended 


from noble and honourable lineage, when supported by 
proper evidence ; and, consequently, 

o. To determine all disputes and competitions that 
may arise between different claimants regarding the 
right to use particular Coats of Anns. 

4. To grant Armorial Ensigns to " virtuous and well- 
deserving persons " not previously entitled to bear them, 
according to his discretion. 

5. To matriculate, in his Official Register all the 
Armorial Bearings used within the Kingdom. 

6. To furnish extracts (or authenticated copies) of 
the same, under his hand and seal, of office, in accord- 
ance with a prescribed scale of charges. 

7. To enforce the penalties imposed on the unlawful 
assumption of heraldic ensigns, by proceedings in his 
own Court. 



As the business of the Office and Court of the Lord 
Lyon is chiefly of a ministerial nature, and as the cases 
which come before it as a judicial tribunal are not very 
numerous, there are no particular Sessions, Rolls, or days 
of Sederunt. These cases are advised in private by the 
Ly on-Depute, and his judgments are communicated 
through the Post-Office to the parties interested, or their 
agents, by the Lyon -Clerk or his assistant. The Solici- 
tors are the same as those in the Court of Session. At 
the date of the Report of the Commissioners already 
referred to (1822), no holidays were observed in the 
Lyon Office, and the daily hours of attendance were 
from 10 to 4 and 6 to 8. At present, the office is open 
to the public every lawful day, except Saturdays and 
public holidays, between the hours of 12 and 2 ; but 
some of the officials are usually to be found during the 
other ordinary hours of business. 

The general nature of the duties of the Lyon-Depute, 
in matters of Heraldry, will be gathered from what has 
been already stated respecting the jurisdiction of the 
Lord Lyon, for whom he officiates. Some of these duties, 


however, must now be more fully considered, and the 
subject of our inquiry may be appropriately introduced 
by the insertion of the principal portion of the deposi- 
tion made by the gentleman who was appointed to fill 
the office of interim Lyon-Depute in the year 1819 : 

" Edinburgh, 27 th June 1821. In presence of the 
Commissioners, compeared Mr. George Tait, advocate, 
interim Lyon-Depute, who being solemnly sworn and 
interrogated, depones (inter alia), That the whole duty 
(of the Lord Lyon) has been delegated to the deponent, 
and is exercised by him ; and that he has not known of 
any appeal being made from his decision to the Lord 
Lyon Being interrogated in what form the pro- 
ceedings relative to claims for Armorial Bearings and 
competitions of such claims are carried on, depones, That 
such claims are usually made, in the first instance at 
least, by a verbal application, but that he has seldom 
disposed of any question of this kind, without some 
written statement from the parties having intervened ; 
that parties are in the practice of applying to have their 
Arms registered, which applications are always stated to 
the deponent, and determined on by him, and are in no 
case granted as matter of course by the Clerk of Court ; 
that since the deponent's appointment, several applica- 
tions have been made for authority to the applicants to 
bear Supporters, but such authority has not hitherto been 
granted by him in any case, none of the parties apply- 
ing having, in his opinion, established their right to 
obtain such authority ; that some instances have also 
occurred, where applications have been made by persons 


stating themselves to be heirs-male of families, the 
senior branches of which had become extinct in the male 
line, and which claims have been decided on by the 
deponent ; and one case is now depending where com- 
petition has occurred respecting the right of bearing the 
Arms of a particular family. Being interrogated, whether 
any record of the proceedings in such cases is made and 
preserved in the office, depones, That there is not, so far 
as the deponent knows ; but when a case is disposed of 
by the Arms being granted, the grant is entered in the 
Register of Arms, and the relationship of the party is 
generally entered shortly in the grant ; that the injunc- 
tion of the Acts of the Scottish Parliament, requiring all 
persons to register their Arms, has not for many years 
past been strictly enforced, and there are many cases in 
which registration has not taken place, both with respect 
to those old families having right to Arms, and likewise 
to persons bearing Arms without any authority or legal 
right ; that the Register of Arms is preserved and entire 
from the year 1672, or nearly that time, and consists 
partly of the entries of armorial bearings of old families 
having right at that time, and partly of later grants, 
which Register will be exhibited for the inspection of the 
Commissioners. Being interrogated, according to what 
rules or ordinances cases respecting the grant of Arms 
or competitions of claims between different parties are 
determined, and whether there is any record of proceed- 
ings or decisions in such matters, depones, That he is 
not aware of any record of precedents in cases of this 
nature ; that he has not, since his appointment, had 


occasion to decide in any formal or regular question of 
competition, 1m t that the rules according to which he 
would form his opinion, and which he has observed in so 
far as he has been called upon to decide on claims 
presented, are those to be found in the Acts of the 
Scottish Parliament 1592, cap. 125, and 1672, cap. 21, 
and the rules laid down by Sir George Mackenzie, Nis- 
bet, and other writers on Heraldry. Being interrogated, 
if there is any restriction observed with respect to the 
class or description of persons to whom a grant of arms 
should be allowed, depones, That such grants are not 
refused in any case where the persons applying are 
respectable, which the Deponent understands to be con- 
formable to the practice now observed in all other Col- 
leges of Arms ; but with respect to the right of bearing 
supporters, this, the Deponent conceives competent to 
be granted in very few cases, and as already observed, 
has not been allowed in any case hitherto by him, and 
he will furnish the Commissioners with a statement of 
what he considers to be the rule applicable to this case. 
Being interrogated if any instance has occurred since he 
was in office in which a person has been prosecuted, as 
liable to fine, for bearing arms unduly, depones, That the 
Deponent did not find, upon coming into office, that the 
practice of levying such fines had been followed by his 
predecessor, or at least not for some years immediately 
preceding, and as his own appointment is ad interim, 
he has not thought it proper to adopt a different rule. 

(Signed) " G. TAIT. ;JI 

1 Report of the Commissioners on Lyon (1822), Appendix No. 3, p. 
the Office and Court of the Lord 50. 



Speaking generally, there is probably not very much 
to object to in the preceding statement, but it cannot be 
denied that, both before and after the year 1819, the prac- 
tice of the Lyon Office exhibited numerous instances of 
" heraldic anomalies/' to which particular reference will 
hereafter be made. Various writers have alluded to 
these official irregularities in pretty strong terms ; in some 
cases, indeed, the strictures appear to have been un- 
necessarily severe. Thus, within the last twenty years, 
it has been asserted that " ignorance of aught but the 
exaction of fees, displayed in a hundred capricious vaga- 
ries, is the ruling characteristic of the establishment, not 
one member of which, from the Lyon to his meanest cub, 
has ever produced a work or exhibited any skill in the 
sciences of Heraldry, Genealogy, or the cognate accom- 
plishments ! " 

Arnot, writing in 17*79, makes the following remarks 
in the course of his notice of the Lyon Office : " The 
office of Lord Lyon has, of late, been held as a sinecure, 
in so much that it has not been thought necessary, that 
this officer should reside in, or ever visit the nation. 
The business, therefore, is entirely committed to deputies, 
who manage it in such a manner, that, in a country 
where pedigree is the best ascertained of any in the 
world, the national record of armorial bearings, and 
memoirs concerning the respective families inserted 
along with them, are far from being the pure repository 
of truth. Indeed, there have of late been instances of 
genealogies enrolled in the books of the Lyon Court, and 
coats of arms, with supporters and other marks of dis- 


tiiictiou, being bestowed in such a manner as to throw 
a ridicule on the science of Heraldry." 1 

An eminent legal antiquary of our own day has, on 
more than one occasion, expressed his opinion with re- 
spect to the subject in question. In the year 1818, he 
says, "The extraordinary forbearance and laxity of our 
practice in matters of arms and pedigree has long been 
a subject of complaint, and may, to the extent to which 
it has now arrived, be assuredly deserving of some repre- 
hension. No statutory enactment has succeeded that of 
Charles n. in the year 1672, which is now nearly obso- 
lete ; and hence independently of other circumstances 
the greatest anarchy prevails in all that is connected 
with the rudest principles of ' Honour/ Without enter- 
ing more deeply, at present, into a point which I have 
promised at some future period to discuss, and certainly 
without intending any particidar reflection, I cannot help 
in general remarking how singularly our policy on this 
head is contrasted with the stern and rigorous ordin 
ances of other countries/'' 2 The same learned author, in 
a later work, refers to the " old and salutary form " of 
recording Peerage creations in the Lyon's Kegisters, 
which, he remarks, "have been so miserably kept and 
purloined " being " now in ancient matters a men 1 
blank deformed, as they besides are, by every incon- 
gruity and misrepresentation, at a modern period." 3 

These are, no doubt, very serious charges, but it must 
be borne in mind that, blameworthy though it unques- 

1 History of Ediuburyk, p. 41)3. :{ Scottish Pee.rcaje and Consl^torial 

- Ricldell's Saltfvot Controversy, Law, ii. 629-30. 
p. 1-21. 


tionably is, the procedure which has called them forth 
has not been peculiar to Scotland. Whatever may have 
been the character of the practice at a later period, it 
would appear that towards the end of the sixteenth 
century, many very scandalous abuses were perpetrated 
by the English Heralds ;* and, .during the reigns of 
Louis xv. and his successor, an open and shameless 
venality is known to have prevailed in the French Col 
lege of Arms. 2 In the case of the Lyon Office, however, 
there has been a very decided tendency, for some time 
past, to cultivate the rules and principles of that earlier 
age, to which we are indebted for a system of Scottish 
Heraldry, whose purity has certainly not been surpassed 
in any other corner of Christendom. 

Deferring for subsequent consideration the question 
of heraldic Succession, as involved in the claims and 
competitions that may occur before the Lyon Court, and 
also that of the right to wear Supporters, which are 
both referred to in Mr. Tait's Deposition, it is now pro 
posed to make some observations, under separate sec- 
tions, on the state of the existing Register of Arms, the 
mode of differencing Cadets, the practice usually followed 
in " composing " new coats armorial, the Fees charged 
for Grants and Matriculations, and the statutory Penalties 
imposed on the unlawful assumption of heraldic ensigns. 


The earliest Register of Arms now extant in Scotland 

1 See Appendix to Noble's History of the College of Arms. 
- Quarterly Review, xlvi. 315. 


is the Book of Blazons executed by Sir David Lindsay 
of the Mount about the year 1542, and authenticated by 
the Scottish Privy Council in 1G30. The following 
autograph of the Author accompanies the illumination 
of his own Arms : " The Armes of Sir David Lindesay 
of the Mont, Knytht, alias Lyon King of Armes, autor 
of the present buke, Anno Domini 1542." As already 
stated, the original which is small folio is preserved 
in the Advocates' Library, a copy of Mr. Laing's valuable 
facsimile being deposited among the records of the 
Lyon Office. This curious manuscript at one time be- 
longed to Sir James Balfour of Denmiln, Lyon King in 
the reign of Charles I., whose signature is attached to 
the attestation by the Privy Council. It came into the 
possession of the Faculty of Advocates, along with the 
other MS. collections of Sir James, in the year 1698. 
Besides the heraldic ensigns of many foreign Princes 
and various members of the Royal family of Scotland, it 
exhibits, in their proper colours, the armorial bearings of 
114 Noblemen and about 320 of the principal families 
in the kingdom, unaccompanied, however, by any exterior 
ornaments in the shape of crest, motto, or supporters. 
With a few exceptions, the illuminations are given with- 
out any verbal description of the Arms, the names of 
the bearers being merely entered over their respective 
shields, thus : " Gordoun Erie Sutherland" "Mate- 
land of Lethyntown." 1 The admirable drawing and 
brilliant colouring of the manuscript presents a very 
favourable specimen of the state of the arts in Scotland, 

1 See Plate I. 


in the middle of the sixteenth century. While an entire 
page is usually assigned to the Arms of each of the 
Kings and Queens of Scotland, in the case of foreign 
potentates the same space embraces three escutcheons 
(two and one). The bearings of the nobility are 
arranged four on every page, the shields of the Earls 
and higher degrees being surmounted by suitable coro- 
nets. The " principal families " are similarly placed, 
except in the latter portion of the volume, where a 
smaller shield is introduced in the centre, making five in 
every page ; and occasionally a single coat is illuminated 
on the back of the leaves. Before the Arms of the prin- 
cipal families, three reasons are stated for including the 
bearings of persons convicted of treason and other seri- 
ous crimes : viz., 1st, To the honour of their noble pre- 
decessors. 2d, To the shame and disgrace of the guilty 
parties. And 3d, As a, warning to others to avoid the 
like offences. 

There is no existing Lyon Register pertaining to the 
interval between 1542 and 1672. During the first fifty 
years of that long period, there was no legislative enact- 
ment on the subject of armorial bearings, which may 
perhaps sufficiently account for the absence of a Record ; 
but armed, with the distinct and simple provisions of the 
Statute of 1592, surely the Lyon-King of that period 
could not have failed to compile an official Register of 
Blazons. In the " Return " made by the Court of Ses- 
sion to the House of Lords, in 1740, on the subject of 
subsisting Scottish Peerages, special reference is made to 
the imperfect state of the .ancient national records. 


'' Not to mention other misfortunes,' 5 to use the language 
of the Report, " it appears, by an examination, to be 
found amongst the Records of Parliament, 8th January 
1661, that of the registers which, having been carried to 
England during the usurpation, of Cromwell, were bring- 
ing back from London, after the Restoration, by sea, 
85 hogsheads were in a storm shifted out of the frigate, 
the Eagle, into another vessel, which sunk with those 
records at sea." 1 It is, of course, by no means impossible 
that some of the heraldic registers of the days of Queen 
Mary and her two successors may have found a place 
among the "85 hogsheads " which thus unfortunately 
perished in the waters of the German Ocean; but we 
know for certain, from the report of the case of Murray 
(24th June 1778), that a portion at least of these same 
records were indebted to another of the elements for 
their destruction. In answer to various questions sug- 
gested by the Lord Ordinary (Hailes) in that case, it was 
stated by the Procurator-Fiscal of the Lyon-Court, inter 
alia, that most of the ancient records of Arms were 
traditionally reported to have been destroyed by fire, 
but that there were still preserved in the Lyon Office 
several old manuscript books of Heraldry, which proved 
of great use in the matriculation of armorial bearings. 
Arnot thus refers to the traditionary conflagration in 
question : " Upwards of a hundred years ago (i.e., 
cir. 1670), it happened the records of the Lyon Office 
to be burned ; upon which an Act of Parliament was 
made (1672, c, 21), ordaining all the nobility and gentry 

1 Robertson's Proetedutgg relating to tfif Peerayp of Scotland, p. 220. 


of Scotland to register their armorial bearings in the 
books of the Lord Lyon, under pain of the confiscation of 
all plate, carriages, etc., upon which arms not regularly 
entered should be depicted." 1 

A Parliamentary Return from the Lyon Office in the 
year 1800 contains several allusions to the state of the 
Records. 2 Besides the " proper Records " of the Office, 
which are articulately specified, we are informed that 
" there are, indeed, said to be other manuscript books 
and printed treatises upon Heraldry, in the custody of 
the Lyon-Clerk, who was also Deputy to the late Lord 
Lyon ; but he insists that they are the private property 
of his former constituent, as having been purchased by 
him." We are further told that " several of the volumes 
of the proceedings of the Lyon Court are lost or missing 
from the office, and, it is believed, are irrecoverable." 
At the date of the Return, the official Books and Records 
were deposited in the private house, in St. Andrew 
Square, of Mr. Bosvvell, Lyon-Clerk, who had refused the 
offer of an apartment in the General Register House ; 
and a question was then under submission to the Lord 
Advocate as to the custody of the Records, for which 
the Lyon-Clerk and the Lord Lyon respectively contended 
the latter maintaining that, according to former prac- 
tice, he or his Deputy was entitled to such custody. 

As a heraldic illustration of the period embraced 
within the long gap in the Register, already referred to, 

1 History of Edinburgh, p. 493. /mrt on the Public Records," 1 ordered 

2 This Return forms Appendix to be printed 4th July 1800. 
W. 4, pp. 402-5, of the " First 7.V- 


Patent granted to 


IN 1567. 

g T-rWt.HrjiJn.-tn. T 


we may here introduce the Armorial Patent of " Jolmne 
Lord maxwell of hereiss," dated 2d April 1567, as given 
in the printed evidence on the Herries Peerage Claim, 
in 1851, from the original at Terregles, which is pro- 
bably one of the oldest existing Scottish documents of 
the kind : 

" Twill all and Sindrie quhonie it efferis quhais knaw 
lege thir pntis salcuni Greting In God evirlesting We 
Shir Robert Forman of Luthrie Knicht Lyoun King of 
Armes with our brithir herauldis of the realme of Scot- 
land being requirit be the richt honorable Johnne Lord 
maxwell of hereiss to assigne and gif unto him sic armes 
In mettaill and culloure as maist deulie suld appertene 
to him and his posteritie as become us of our office to 
do Quhairfore we having respect to thais ^thingis that 
appertenit hes assignit and assignis to him quarterlie the 
first and thrid silver ane saulter sable with ane Lam- 
beaw of thre feitt gulis secund and ferde silver thro 
hurtcheonis sable with the beraris of the scheilde helme 
Tymmerall and Detouii as heirunder Is Depaintit 1 
quhilk he and his posteritie may lefullie beir without 
reproche Quhilk We testifie be thir pntis subscrivit be 
Marchemont hairauld our clerk of office quhairunto oure 
seile of office is appensit At Edinburgh the Secund Day 
of Aprill the yeir of God ane thowsand fyve hundretli 
thre score sevin yeiris. 

(Signed) " ADAME M'CuLLu 1 

Mrchemont, hairauld clerk, of ye office 
of Armes of Scotland." 

(Dor so.} " Armes of the hous of herreis." 

1 See Plate IT. 


The Lyon Register is extant from the year 16 v 2 
(which is the date of the latest enactment on the subject 
of heraldic ensigns), and " consists partly of the entries 
of armorial bearings of old families having right at that 
time, and partly of later grants." Speaking of this 
official Record, Nisbet remarks that it " is not so complete 
as is to be wished ;" adding that " many of our most 
ancient and considerable families have neglected to 
register their Arms, notwithstanding the Act of Parlia- 
ment, partly through indolence, and partly through an 
extravagant opinion of their own greatness, as if the 
same could never be obscured. So that, were it not for 
ancient records, books of blazons, charters with seals 
appended thereto, or other monuments of antiquity, 
to which I have had recourse with great labour, and 
some of which I have purchased with great charges, the 
armorial bearings of sundry considerable families and 
surnames in Scotland had been entirely lost. However, 
as the Lyon Office is of late much improven, and better 
regulated than formerly, it is like to be very useful in time 
coming ; and I have collected the greatest part of my 
blazons therefrom." 1 

There can be no doubt that Scottish Heraldry is 
materially indebted to the exertions of Alexander Nisbet. 
In the prosecution of his favourite study, he contrived 
to collect, from the various sources already mentioned, 
the armorial bearings " of most, if not all, of those sur- 
names and families that ever made any considerable 
figure in Scotland ;" and the value of his researches is 

1 System of HeraMry, vol. i. Preface, p. v. 


very much enhanced by the numerous references which 
are introduced as the " proper vouchers " of his blazon. 
Mr. Chambers alludes to the patronage of literature by the 
Scottish Parliament at the commencement of the eigh- 
teenth century, stating, however, that it was " a good 
deal after the manner of the poor gentleman who be- 
queathed large ideal sums to his friends, and comforted 
himself with the reflection that it at least showed good 
will." He particularly refers to Nisbet's laborious Work 

L V 

on Heraldry, which the Author was unable to publish 
without assistance. Besides italic types " whereof 
there were very few in this kingdom" the book re- 
quired a large number of copper-plate engravings ; and 
" accordingly, on Nisbet's petition, the Parliament (3d 
September 1703) recommended the Treasury to grant 
him 248, 6s. 8d. sterling, out of what fund they shall 
think fit." 1 The fund selected appears to have been 
" the tonnage of foreign ships," but, in the words of the 
worthy Herald, " that fund not answering their expecta- 
tions, and being encumbered with prior assignments," 2 
he never got a farthing from that source. 

The Lord Lyon's Eegister consists of six large vellum 
folios, of which the first is very much thicker than the 
others, embracing as it does a period of 132 years, viz., 
from 1672 to 1804. The second volume extends to 
1822, the third to 1835, the fourth to 1848, and the 
fifth to 1858 ; while the sixth is the current Eecord. 

At the commencement of Vol. i. are separately illumi- 

1 Domestic Annals of Scotland ', iii. 2 System of Heraldry, vol. i. Pre- 

270, face, p. iv. 


nated the official and family bearings of Sir Charles 
Erskine of Cambo, (Lord) Lyon during the reign of 
Charles u., followed by a verbal blazon of the Arms of 
the King, Duke of Albany, Archbishops, Bishops, and 
Nobility of Scotland, numerous blanks being left for 
those who failed to matriculate in accordance with the 
Act of " the Merry Monarch." Next in order come the 
bearings of the Knights Baronet, Knights Bachelor, 
and Barons, "all sett downe as their sur-names agree 
with the order of the alphabet, blanks being left for 
adding the atchievements of those who shall hereafter 
come in at the end of each letter." Then follow the 
matriculated " Armes belonging to the Gentlemen within 
the Kingdome. . . . insert alphabeticallie ;" and after 
these the bearings of Burghs, Colleges, Corporations, 
Companies, and Offices ; while the latter portion of the 
volume contains a number of " promiscuous matricula- 
tions." In a very few instances, the relative arms are 
illuminated in the margin of the verbal blazon, 1 and, in 
the earlier part of the Register, a single page not unfre- 
quently embraces entries pertaining to eight different 

In all the subsequent volumes, the verbal description 
of the arms is invariably accompanied by a pictorial 
blazon. In the case of Vol. ii., arms with supporters 
usually occupy an entire page of the Record, being 
placed above the relative verbal description ; while 
escutcheons without supporters are painted in the mar- 
gin of the blazon, varying in number from two to four 

1 See Plate III. fig. I. 


on each page. lu the same volume, neither the sup 
ported nor the unsupported shields are timbred with 
helmets and mantlings, being merely surmounted by the 
Crest on a wreath of the bearer's liveries. Like certain 
portions of its predecessor, the whole of Vol. ii. abounds 
with highly questionable grants of supporters. Some 
idea of their prevalence may be formed when it is stated 
that, out of the 284 escutcheons which the volume con- 
tains, no fewer than 92 or very nearly one third of the 
\vhole are accompanied by these exterior ornaments ! 

In the four later Volumes (iii.-vi.), an entire page is 
generally given to each ntry, two pages being some- 
times occupied, when the blazon extends beyond the 
ordinary length. The shields are invariably accompanied 
by suitable helmets and mantlings, not unfrequently 
surmounted by two, and occasionally by three crests 
and mottoes. In the case of the Nobility, the mantling 
is red, lined (or doubled) with ermine, that of Com- 
moners being also red, but with a white lining. In a 
few instances, the mantling consists of the principal 
colour and metal in the escutcheon, with which the 
wreath (placed below the crest) is always alternately 
tinctured. Many of the illuminations in these later 
volumes are most beautifully executed. The handiwork 
of Mr. M'Innes, who held the office of herald painter 
about thirty years ago, could hardly be surpassed of 
which the bearings of Dennistoun of Colgrain and 
Pringle of Whytbank, in Vol. iii, may be mentioned 
as examples. Both the drawing and colouring of the 
present herald painter, Mr. Frier, afford ample evidence 


of his acknowledged artistic skill ; l and the admirable 
engrossing of the descriptive blazonry reflects the 
highest credit on Mr. Anderson, Marchmont Herald and 
Lyon Clerk-Depute, who, for many years, has devoted 
his time and talents to the service of the public in 
matters of Heraldry. 

According to Mr. Tait's Deposition, " the injunction 
of the Acts of the Scottish Parliament, requiring all per- 
sons to register their arms, has not for many years past 
been strictly enforced, and there are many cases in which 
registration has not taken place, both with respect to 
those old families having right to arms, and likewise to 
persons bearing arms without any authority or legal 
right." Since the date of that Deposition, it is to be 
feared that there has been no very great improvement 
in the matter of registration. Although, doubtless, there 
is, in one respect, a marked difference between the two 
classes of persons mentioned by Mr. Tait as failing to 
comply with the legislative enactments, it must not be 
forgotten that both are equally required to matriculate 
their armorial bearings in the Eegister of the Lord Lyon. 
In the case of many of the " old families having right to 
arms" prior to the year 1592, prescription would not 
unreasonably be pleaded. " I think it very hard," says 
Nisbet, " that a person cannot by right, jure antecessorio, 
carry the arms which his progenitors used, legally per- 
haps, the authority and warrant being lost through time ; 
more especially when accounts of them are so indiffer- 
ently taken and kept by our provincial heralds, and in 

1 Sue Plate III. ti<'. 2. 


latter times as indifferently preserved." 1 It is extremely 
probable, moreover, that the bearings of such families 
were duly recorded in the Register which no longer 
exists ; and, satisfied with this presumption, they may 
have long considered it quite unnecessary to condescend 
to what might really be tantamount to a second regis- 
tration. Perhaps, again, they cannot tolerate the idea 
of allowing their time-honoured ensigns to occupy a later 
page in the official Record than those of the man of 
yesterday, who now dashes proudly past them in his 
gorgeous equipage, blazoned in every corner with the 
lately granted symbols of gentility. But whatever may 
be the cause of the irregularity, it is a matter of fact 
that the heraldic insignia of a large number of our 
ancient families are not to be found -in the Register of 
the Lord Lyon, which still continues, in the language of 
an Act of Parliament, " the true and unrepeatable rule of 
all -Arms and Bearings in Scotland." The " Baronage " 
of Sir Robert Douglas, published about sixty years ago, 
contains a genealogical account of 252 of the most con- 
siderable Scottish families, of whom only 120 (less than 
one-half) are stated, on the authority of Mr. James Gum- 
ming, " Custodier of the Lyon Archives," to possess legal 
" warrants " for armorial ensigns. Among the names of 
the unrecorded majority we find numerous families, 
both of high position arid ancient lineage, of whom it is 
sufficient to mention Blair of Blair, Bruce of Kennet, 
Cameron of Locheil, Colquhoun of Luss, Dunclas of Dun- 
das, Lindsay of Kirkforthar, MacDomiell of Glengarry, 

1 System of Htraldry, vol. ii. part iii. p. 58. 


Murray of Philiphaugh, .Ramsay of Banff', Riddell of 
Riddell, and Svvinton of Swinton. Of these, a consider- 
able number have, no doubt, thought proper to record 
their Arms since the days of Sir Robert Douglas, but for 
the Bearings of not a few of them, the official Register 
will still be consulted in vain. 

It would be worse than useless to dwell, for a single 
moment, on those cases of neglected registration which 
are supposed to arise from indolence or pride ; and 
surely the mere fact of occupying a lower place in the Re- 
cord, in point of time, is very far from a sufficient reason 
for allowing the omission to continue. This accidental 
circumstance would, of course, have been avoided, if 
the ancestors of the families in question had complied 
with the statutory injunction of Charles IL, and every 
day's delay is only making matters worse. But, after 
all, what does the objection amount to ? By the practice 
of the Lyon Office, the pedigrees of all persons whose 
Arms are recorded are therewith briefly entered in the 
Register, which' may thus be made to bear witness to the 
reddest blood in Scotland. 

As to the other class of persons noticed by the Lyon 
Depute as being guilty of a similar omission to matricu- 
late viz., those who use armorial bearings " without 
any authority or legal right," there certainly does not 
appear to be the slightest shadow of an excuse for the 
course which they unscrupulously pursue. It has already 
been admitted that, looking merely to the Acts of Parlia- 
ment, both classes are equally bound to comply with 
their clear and authoritative provisions : but taking into 


account the various considerations which not very un- 
reasonably seem to influence the families of ancient 
blood, it may be pretty safely asserted that there is, 
comparatively speaking, a much greater obligation, on 
the part of the gentlemen of yesterday, to record their 
armorial bearings. It is not their lot to inherit an 
ancient escutcheon, whose charges have proudly waved 
on the field of battle, and may still be traced on the 
mouldering walls of some venerable stronghold. They 
may be genuine Howards or Douglases in disguise, but 
of this there is, unfortunately, no evidence ; and what- 
ever may be the fame, the wealth, or the influence 
which they possess, their pedigree must remain involved 
in mystery, and even their grandfathers will frequently 
be searched for in vain. It is one thing to inherit 
another to assume ; and, moreover, let it be remembered 
that there is no necessity for the assumption. If they 
must become the wearers of heraldic ensigns and the 
desire appears to be both natural and proper let them 
render themselves entitled to the privilege, according to 
the only legal mode. Instead of being ashamed, let 
them rather entertain an honest pride in being the first 
to bear the coveted distinctions, keeping in mind that 
the noblest families in the Kingdom must look back to 
a period in their history when they were raised above 
the level of the masses, through the genius or the in- 
dustry of a worthy ancestor. Surely it is a far higher 
distinction thus to become the Founder of an honourable 
family, than to be a mere passive and accidental link in 
the most ancient and illustrious lineage ! 



In addition to the Register of Arms, a somewhat 
meagre Register of Genealogies is to be found among 
the Records of the Lyon Office. Two folio volumes cgn- 
tain a number of Pedigrees and Birth-Brieves, of which 
the former extends from 1727 to 1796, and the latter 
from 1827 to 1860. There is also a third folio volume 
(not authenticated), which is entitled " MS. Genealogies," 
besides several other small collections of Birth-Brieves. 
It is certainly very much to be deplored that the Register 
of Genealogies is not of a more comprehensive character, 
as the importance of a well- authenticated record of pedi- 
gree cannot be questioned. In referring to this Record, 
Professor Lorimer remarks : " To what extent the Re- 
gister of Genealogies in the Lyon Office may be admitted 
as a probative document conclusive of the facts which 
it sets forth, has not been ascertained by actual decision ; 
but there can be no doubt that, in questions both as to 
property and honours, it would be regarded as a most 
important adminicle of proof. The genealogical depart- 
ment of the Heralds' College in London is a very im- 
portant one, and it is to be regretted that the uses of the 
corresponding department of the Lyon Office are so 
little understood and appreciated by the public/' 1 In 
terms of a standing order of the House of Lords, dated 
llth May 1767, the pedigrees of the Nobility required 
to be recorded in the Books of the English College of 
Arms, after having been proved at the Bar of the House. 
Unfortunately, this order was rescinded by Lord Thur- 
low, in 1802, with the intention of proposing a new one, 

1 Handbook of the Law of Scotland, 2d Edition, p. 446. 


which, however, was never accomplished ; and accord- 
ingly, many Noblemen are unable to exhibit any pedi- 
grees except those which are published in the fleeting 
" Peerages" of the day. The recording of Genealogies, 
however, appears to have long held a prominent place 
among the duties of the English Heralds. The evidence 
usually produced in corroboration of pedigree is, of course, 
documentary consisting of deeds, inquisitions post 
mortem, funeral certificates, testamentary bequests, and 
extracts from parochial registers. According to Mr. 
Dallaway, " the indispensable practice of the College of 
Arms enjoins, that whenever a pedigree, hitherto unen- 
tered or to be compiled, is offered for their sanction, the 
herald retained for that purpose is obliged to submit it 
to the whole society in chapter, and all objections must 
be resolved before it is inserted in the public register, 
and duly confirmed." 1 

Besides a more general registration of Arms, it is veiy 
desirable that the Lord Lyon's Register of Genealogies 
should be much more extensively used than heretofore. 
If framed upon proper principles, the value and import- 
ance of such a record can hardly be over-estimated. First 
and foremost, it ought to embrace the Scottish Peerage, 
in whose historical associations all ranks and conditions of 
men cannot fail to feel some interest. 2 Baronets, Knights, 
and Squires ought also to occupy its pages. In many 

1 Inquiries Into the Origin and Pro land, Mr. Hannay quaintly remarks 
(jrexs of the Science of Heraldry in that " even a Glasgow radical warms 
England, p. 361. at the name"! (Essays from the 

2 In alluding to the Douglases as Quarterly Review, p. 41.) 
the most illustrious family in Scot- 


instances, indeed, the Commoner can show redder blood 
than the Peer, and we are sometimes apt to forget that 
numbers of our untitled aristocracy are strictly Noble in 
the old and proper sense of that term. 1 Lastly, the 
wealth and intelligence of our own day, although not 
combined with ancient lineage, should unquestionably 
hold a place among the entries in the Register, as at least 
two or three generations can generally be authenticated. 
Unfortunately, the deficiency in question is not even 
partially supplied by County Histories, of which England 
has produced so many admirable specimens. We can 
boast, however, of several excellent Family Histories, 
embracing a large amount of genealogical detail. Among 
others, we may specify Hume of Godscroft's well-known 
li History of the House of Douglas and Angus" (1644) ; 
Bishop Burnet's " Memoirs of the Dukes of Hamilton " 
(1677) ; the three Genealogical Histories of the Stewarts, 
by Crawfurd (1710 and 1782), Duncan Stewart (1739), 
and Andrew Stuart (1798) ; Sir Walter Scott's "Memorie 
of the Somervilles," 2 vols. (1815) ; Sir Richard Maitland's 
" Cronicle of the Hous of Seytoun " (1829) ; Lord Strath- 
allan's " Genealogie of the most noble and ancient House 
of Drummond" (1831) ; and Lord Lindsay's "Lives of 
the Lindsays," 3 vols. (1849), of which it has been truly 
said that " it appears to unite, more happily than any 
other performance, the old sentiment of past days with 

1 " Every British gentleman en- ' Nobility' exclusively appropriated 

titled to bear coat-armour, is noble, to the Peerage." (Lord Lindsay's 

whether titled or not. It is only in -Lives of the Lindsays, i. 227, note.) 
comparatively recent times that this See also The Nobility of the British 

has been forgotten, and the term Gentry, by Sir James Laiirence. 


the knowledge and clearness of the time in which we 
live the heart of the fifteenth century with the eyes of 
the nineteenth." 1 Probably one of the most valuable 
modern contributions to the subject of Genealogy and 
Heraldry combined is Mr. Henry Drummond's splendid 
folio "History of Noble British Families" (1844-9), of 
which only eight parts were published, embracing the 
Scottish Houses of Bruce, Dunbar, Hume, Dundas, and 
Drummond, besides seven or eight English historical 
families. It was suggested by Count Litta's sumptuous 
book on Italian families, and is profusely illustrated by 
facsimiles of Seals, engravings of Monuments, interesting 
Portraits, and gorgeous Heraldry. As two still more 
recent productions of a similar kind, we may mention 
the beautiful works privately printed by Mr. Stirling of 
Keir and the lamented Lord Eglin ton " The Stirlings 
of Keir and their Family Papers" (1858), and the " Me- 
morials of the Montgomeries," 2 vols. (1859) both 
edited by Mr. William Fraser of the General Register 
House, whose remarkable familiarity with all matters 
connected with peerage and pedigree is now so well 
known, and who, we are glad to understand, is at present 
engaged" in the preparation of a similar work relative to 
the ancient family of Maxwell. 


One of the principal heraldic duties of the Lord Lyon, 
or his Deputy, is to assign suitable marks of difference 
to the Cadets, or younger branches, of families having a 

1 Hannay's Essays from the Qtiarterly Renew, \\ 75. 


right to Armorial Bearings. Like the rescinded Act of 
1662, the later Statute of 16 72 makes special reference 
to the fact of many of the lieges who were entitled to 
bear Arms having unlawfully assumed, " without dis- 
tinctions," the ensigns of the Heads of their families ; and 
for the purpose of enabling the Lyon to distinguish the 
bearings of such persons with " congruent differences," 
special provision is made for the transmission of authen- 
ticated certificates of their descent. 

Besides an elaborate chapter in his larger work, the 
laborious Nisbet has produced a separate treatise on the 
subject under consideration, entitled " An Essay on 
Additional Figures and Marks of Cadency, showing the 
ancient and modern practice of differencing Descendants, 
in this and other Nations." Towards the commencement 
of the volume, he introduces the following advice of the 
learned Camden, Glarenceux King-of-Arms in England : 
" No Gentleman ought to bear the differences in Armories 
otherwise than the office of Armorie requireth, and when 
younger brethren do marry, erect and establish new 
Houses, and accordingly do bear their Arms with such 
a distinction and difference that they might be known 
from the families from which they are descended, the 
King-of-Arms ought to be consulted withal, and such 
differences of Houses are to be assigned and established 
by his privity and consent, that so he may advise them 
best and keep record thereof ; otherwise Gentlemen, by 
taking unfit Ensures, 1 may either prejudge themselves or 

1 The French term for marks of Cadency, from their breaking the principal 
Arms of the family. 


,-1 O tl W O -> O W 
e*j *> -^ "i (6 r -" j on" 


the principal Houses they are come of." " This advice," 
adds Nisbet, " is congruous to our law, and consonant to 
the principles of prudence and reason ; and I wish from 
my heart that our gentry may take more heed to this 
than hitherto they have done, and may apply to the 
Lyon Office for suitable differences, arid not assume them 
at their own hand, or by the advice of some presump- 
tuous sciolist, whereby oftentimes their posterity suffer 
prejudice." 1 

Of the numerous modes which have been adopted for 
distinguishing Cadets, when they "erect and establish 
new Houses," the most common, and probably the most 
satisfactory, is the assumption of conspicuous and per- 
manent additional figures. 2 These, however, must not be 
confounded with the minute and temporary marks of 
Cadency label, crescent, mullet, etc., termed "differ- 
entia consanguineorwn" which are usually assumed by 
a man's sons, during his lifetime, in order to indicate 
their respective degrees of birth. 3 The use of the latter, 

1 Essay on Marks of Cadency, p. 15. by adding to its estate and repute, 

2 See Plate iv. the crescent being, in the words of 

3 Most of the old writers on Her- Camden, " the double blessing, which 
aldry have assigned a figurative im- giveth future hope of increase. " The 
port to these differences of consan- third son carries a Mullet, or spur- 
guinity. According to Mackenzie, rowel, "to incite him to chivalry." 
the eld&st son carries a Label of three The fourth, a Martlet, represented 
points, in the lifetime of his father, without feet, " to signify that as 
" to signify that he is but the third that bird seldom lights on the land, 
person, his father being one, his mother so younger brothers have little land 
another, and himself the third." to rest upon, but the wings of their 

" Ou un label dasure avoit, own endeavours." The fifth, an An- 

Porce q'ces peres vivoit." nulet, or ring, to encourage him " to 

(Siege of Caerlaveroek.) achieve great actions, the badge 

The second has a Crescent, to show whereof was, in old times, jus aure- 

that he should increase the family, orum annulorum." The sixth, a 



as perpetual and hereditary figures, although occasional 
among some of the most eminent families both in Eng- 
land and Scotland, has been very justly censured by 
various heraldic authorities, including Dugdale, Spelman, 
Mackenzie, and Nisbet. Dugdale considers that these 
minute differences do not show the time of the descent ; 
" neither can it be known," he says, " which of the cres- 
cent-bearers was the uncle or nephew. And further it is 
a very usual matter for every new riser at this day, if 
he can find that there is any of the like surname that 

Fleur-de-lis, "to put him in miud 
of his Country and Prince." The 
seventh, a, Rose, to make him " en- 
deavour to flourish like that excel- 
lent flower." The eighth, a Cross- 
Moline, or anchoring Cross, to re- 
mind him " to grip when he can 
fasten, seeing he has nothing else to 

which he may trust." The ninth, a 
double Quatrefoil, "to express that 
he is removed from the succession by 
eight degrees." 

Both Heralds and Lawyers agree 
in the opinion that, except in the 
case of the Royal family, daughters 
should not carry any marks of differ- 

ence, the reason being, according to 
Sir George Mackenzie, that as they 
succeed equall}', and are heirs-por- 
tioners, such marks are not required. 
It is usual, however, for women to 
bear the differences which pertain to 
their fathers. Only the Label is used 
as a mark of distinction by the 
members of the Royal family, being 

carried by both sons and daughters, 
varied by additional pendants and 
charges, except in the case of the 
Prince of Wales, who bears the label 
plain. The theory of this practice 
is that none of the children of the 
blood-royal are entitled to Arms by 
descent, the bearings of the Sovereign 
being those of the State. 


beareth mark, presently to usurp the same with a crescent 
or some such difference, so that (for my own part) I do 
seldom credit such kind of differings or their bearers, 
unless it be by some other testimony, or proof made 
manifest, which cannot be counterfeited so well in the 
other device, except the riser should be thoroughly 
acquainted with the descent of him w r hose line he 
seeketh to intrude himself into." 1 In like manner, Mac- 
kenzie urges various objections against the use of the 
figures in question as permanent marks of difference, 
particularly in the case of certain Arms in which cres- 
cents and fleur-de-lis constitute the proper charges ; and 
he condemns the practice as having confounded all the 
ancient Coats and filled our escutcheons "with more 
crescents and mullets than are in the Arms of all 
Europe besides." 2 

The irregularities arising from a disregard of the dis- 
tinct objects of " Marks of Cadency" and " Differences" 
have, to some extent, disfigured the heraldic practice of 
Scotland, but they have been much more prevalent in 
other countries, and particularly in France. At the present 
day, as of old, the label is to be seen on the escutcheons 
of all the members of the House of Orleans, while the 
distinctive mark of the family of Anjou was a plain red 
bordure, which the Alencon branch charged with eight 
bezants, by way of further difference. Both in England 3 
and Scotland, some substantial alteration is almost inva- 

1 Usage of Arms, Banks' Edition, English Differences, see Dallaway's 
p. 15. Heraldry in England, pp. 129 and 

2 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxi. 379 ; also Lower's Curiosities of Her - 
" For some ciirious examples of aldnj, Appendix A. 


riably made by Cadets upon the escutcheon carried by 
the head of the family ; but the principles upon which 
even the most learned Heralds have acted have been so 
very variable, that Sir George Mackenzie comes to the 
conclusion that, with the sanction of the proper autho 
rities, every person ought to be allowed " to take what 
mark of distinction can best suit with the Coat which 
his Chief bears." When armorial bearings first became 
hereditary, the differences adopted were more definite 
and distinct than at a later period ; and if some more 
decided system had been followed, in the differencing of 
Arms, during the development of the science of Her- 
aldry, it would unquestionably have proved an invaluable 
handmaid in the pursuit of genealogical and historical 
investigations. Even as it is, however, armorial ensigns 
have been of no little service in such researches, and we 
have already referred, in the introductory chapter, to some 
striking examples of their utility in matters of pedigree. 
Heraldic charges are generally divided into two grand 
classes, viz., proper and natural the former including 
what are termed " Ordinaries" (pale, fess, bend, chief, 
chevron, etc.), and also " Sub-ordinaries" (bordure, tres- 
sure, canton, etc.) ; while the latter comprehends all 
animate and inanimate objects, which are described by 
appropriate terms expressive of the manner in which 
they are represented, as well as of the position which 
they occupy in the shield. " All these figures," says 
Nisbet, " whether proper or natural, are sometimes 
carried as principal, and sometimes as additional. By 
principal figures, we understand those hereditary fixed 


marks carried by the chiefs of families (which serve to 
distinguish chief families from one another), and are 
transmitted to all the descendants. By additional figures, 
we understand those, whether proper or natural, which 
cadets add, as marks of cadency and differences, to the 
principal, hereditary, fixed figures of the family, that 
they may be distinguished from the Chief and from one 
another, which are called differentiae extraneorum." ] 
Besides being marks of distinction, these differences fre- 
quently accomplish a secondary object, by commemo- 
rating some honourable action, employment, or alliance, 
of which many instances occur in Scottish Heraldry. 

A very common mode of differencing cadets is by 
adding, to the paternal Arms of the family, one of the 
Ordinaries or Sub-ordinaries already referred to, parti- 
cularly the Chevron or the Bordure of which numerous 

examples will be found in the Lyon Register. 2 Thus, 
Oliphant of Bachilton placed a chevron between the 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part figures by the Chiefs of families, as 
iii. p. 17. in the case of the old Earls of March, 

and the noble Heads of the existing 

2 Both the Bordure and the Chevron Houses of Maule, Kennedy, and 
are occasionally carried as prlnai>al Elphinstone. 



three crescents carried by Lord Oliphant as head of the 
family, while Dundas of Arniston surrounds the lion 

rampant of his chief, Dundas of that Ilk, with an ermine 
bordure. In like manner, the Earl of Aboyue, a younger 
son of George second Marquis of Huntly, carried a 
chevron in addition to the paternal arms of Gordon 
(three boars' heads) his motto being " Slant ccetera 
tig no" in allusion to the chevron, or tignum (which most 
Heralds regard as representing the couplings or rafters 
of a building), and " to show his descent from an esta- 
blished House." Again, the Lundins of Auchtermairnie, 
descended from the Lundins of that Ilk, bear the old 
arms of Lundin, viz., paly of six, argent and gules, on a 
bend, azure, three cushions, or, all within a bordure, 
indented, of the third. 1 When the chevron and bordure, 
besides being formed by plain lines, are of the tincture of 
the principal Jigure in the field and uncharged with other 

1 The same arms, with the excep- 
tion of the bordure, were carried by 
the Lundins of that Ilk till the year 
1679, when the following Coat was 
specially granted to them by King 
Charles n., in commemoration of their 
descent from William the Lion : 

Or, a lion rampant gules, within the 
royal tressure, flory and counter flory 
of the last, all within a bordure, go- 
bonated, azure and argent. (For the 
Royal Grant authorizing the change 
in question, see Nisbet's System of 
Heraldry, i. 64.) 


devices, they are supposed to indicate that the bearer either 
is, or represents, an immediate younger son of the prin- 
cipal family ; but if these charges are formed by crooked 
lines (engrailed, invected, indented, or embattled), de- 
scent from the third or fourth son is presumed to be 
implied. In other words, the greater the variation of the 
chevron and bordure by means of these accidental forms, 
by being charged with other figures, or by being gobo- 
nated (compone), or divided by the partition lines (parted 
per pale, fess, bend, etc.), the further are the bearers 
usually supposed to be removed from the principal House, 
To use the language of the Author of Jurisprudentia 
Heroica, " Tertio genitui films primus paternum retinet 
limbum ; secundus limbum prseferet dentatum a la 
bordure edentee ; tertius besantiis nummis insignitum 
d la bordure chargee de besans ; quartus sectionibus 
diversi coloris distinctum a la bordure componee, et ita 
de cseteris." 

The Label (or Lambel), already referred to as a tem- 
porary mark of cadency, appears to have been sometimes 
carried as a hereditary difference, of which Nisbet men- 
tions three examples, viz., Hamilton, Earl of Abercorn, 
Arbuthnot of Findowrie, and a younger branch of the 
House of Nithsdale. According to Dallaway, the Ribbon 
is a difference of very high antiquity, while the Baton 
(with which it is sometimes confounded) is of much 
later introduction. The former extends diagonally across 
the entire shield, from the dexter chief to the sinister 
base, while the latter is couped at both extremities, and 
is generally, although not invariably, borne sinister i.e., 



extending from the sinister chief to the dexter base as 
a mark of " incomplete agnation." A well-known ex- 
ample of the Eibbon is to be found in the old arms of 
Abernethy, as quartered by several distinguished Scot- 
tish families, where it surmounts or bruises a rampant 
lion. The Bend, or its diminutive the Bendlet, appears 
to have been similarly used by Henry of Lancaster, 
second son of Henry IIL, on whose seal the three lions 
of England are debruised by that figure ; and Mr. Mon- 
tagu engraves an interesting example (a fleur-de-lis 
surmounted by a bendlet) from one of the ancient tiles 
in the Abbaye aux Hommes at Caen. 1 

Where one of the Ordinaires is carried by the principal 
family, the younger branches not unfrequently charge it 
with stars, animals' heads, leaves, and other figures. 

Thus Maxwell of Teyling bore " a mans heart " on the 
paternal sal tire of his family, 2 while Dennistoun of 

1 Another mode of differencing, 
termed " Gerattyng," appears to 
have anciently prevailed in England. 
It consisted in powdering the escut- 
cheon with stars, crosses, and other 
small charges, of which nine differ- 
ent kinds are enumerated in the 

" Boke of St. Albans. " (See Planch g's 
Pursuivant of Arms, p. 145.) 

2 The Saltire is also the bearing of 
the Irish Fitzgeralds and of the Eng- 
lish Nevilles. 

" Upon his surcoat valiant Neville bore 
A silver Saltire upon martial red." 

(Draytorfs Barons' War, i. 22.) 


Mount] ohn, besides altering the tincture of the bend 
carried by Dennistoun of that Ilk, charged it with three 

When the bearings consist of "natural" figures, a 
third mode of distinction is to place, in the centre of the 
shield, a figure different from the other charges. Ac- 
cordingly, in addition to the three bears' heads of his 
noble Chieftain, a cross pattee, fitched, is carried by 

Forbes of Craigievar ; and, in like manner, Borthwick of 
Crookston formerly bore a raven's head in the centre 
of the three cinquefoils, which constitute the paternal en- 
signs of the name. 1 

Besides the assumption of additional figures, the 
following modes of distinguishing Cadets are adopted in 
Scottish Heraldry, but some of them, it must be acknow- 
ledged, have not met with the approbation of either 
Nisbet or Mackenzie : 

1. By changing the tinctures of the field or of the 
principal charges. 

1 The raven's head is on the 
authority of Pont and Workman, 
and forms a much more satisfactory 
difference thau the crescent which is 
given in the Lyon Register. The 

family of Crookston claims the an- 
cient Barony of Borthwick as well 
as the Chieftainship, and accordingly 
its present bearings are simply ar- 
gent, three cinquefoils sable. 


2. By giving accidental forms to the principal figures. 

3. By altering their position, and occasionally their 


4. By quartering other arms with the paternal bearings. 

1. By changing the tinctures of the field or of the 
principal charges. Thus, the Earl of Loudon converted 
the or and sable gyrons of Macallum More (the Duke of 

Argyll) into ermine and gules the first of his family, in 
the reign of Robert the Bruce, having married Susanna 
Crawfurd, heiress of Loudon, whose bearings were gules 
a fess ermine. In like manner, the family of Home 
place the white lion rampant of the old Earls of March, 
from whom they are descended, on a green instead of a 
red field. As examples of change of tincture in the case 
of the principal charges, two instances may be cited. 
The paternal arms of the House of Hamilton are gules, 
three einquefoils ermine, while several branches of the 
family make the einquefoils argent. Again, the original 
bearings of the surname of Shaw are azure, three covered 
cups or, which Shaw of Sornbeg alters to argent, besides 
placing three mullets in fess. Another mode of altering 


the tinctures, termed counterchanying (or countercharg- 
ing), is usually adopted where the branch is far removed 
from the main stem, as in the case of a cadet of a cadet. 
It consists in dividing the field of the principal family, 
when one of tincture, into two the charge or charges 
being counterchanged, so that metal may not rest upon 
metal, nor colour upon colour. 1 Accordingly, Laurence 
Oliphant, Writer to the Signet, descended from a second 
son of Oliphant of Gask (a cadet of Lord Oliphant), carried 
party per fess, gules and argent, three crescents counter- 
changed the two crescents in the upper half of the 
shield being white on a red field, and the single crescent 

in the lower half being red on a white field ; while the 
principal arms of the surname, as already mentioned, 
are three white crescents on a field entirely red. Like 
chevrons and bordures, however, counterchanged bear- 

1 A violation of this well-known 
heraldic rule occurs in the insignia of 
the kingdom of Jerusalem, established 
by the Crusaders, which are argent. 
a' cross poteut between four plain 
crosslets, or. The crosses are sup- 
posed to symbolize the five wounds of 
our Saviour, and the peculiarity of 

the blazon is said to bear allusion to 
Ps. Ixviii. 1 3. The Arms of the Spanish 
Inquisition sable, across, cert afford 
another example. Such bearings are 
termed "annes pour euqurir," being 
intended to excite inquiry into the 
cause which prompted a deviation 
from ordinary practice. 




ings do not necessarily indicate cadency. Thus, the 
Earl of Panmure, Chief of the family of Maule, carried 
party per pale, argent and gules, on a bordure eight 
escallops, all couriterchanged ; and, in like manner, the 
arms of Lord Nairne were party per pale, sable and ar-. 
gent, a chaplet charged with four quatrefoils, similarly 
counterchanged. 1 

2. A second mode of distinguishing cadets is by giving 
accidental forms to the principal charges, either (l.) by 
means of the various partition lines, in the case of the 
ordinaries and subordinaries ; or (2.) by what is termed 
couping, erasing, etc., in the case of " natural" figures. 
Thus, Graham of Meiklewood carries the paternal arms 

of Montrose, but makes the chief embattled instead of 
plain ; while Elliot of Stobs engrails the plain bend 
which forms the bearing of the principal family of the 
name. Where natural figures such as the heads or 
limbs of animals are carried as armorial ensigns, their 
forms are sometimes altered and modified by the cadets, 
by means of couping or erasing, i.e., cutting off in a 

1 The bearings of the poet Chaucer were party per pale, argent and gules 
a bend counterchanged. 



straight line, or tearing away so as to leave a jagged 
edge. 1 Accordingly, it appears from Pout's MS. that 
Porteous of Halkshaw carried azure, three stags' heads, 

couped, argent, attired with ten tynes, or ; while the 
arms of George Porteous of Craiglockart, " one of his 
Majesty's Herald Painters," are thus blazoned in the 
Lyon Register : On the same field (azure), a thistle 
between three bucks' heads, erased, or. 2 

3. Cadets are also distinguished by altering the posi- 

tion (and occasionally the number) of the charges borne 

1 The term " couped" is occasion- 
ally applied to the fess, saltire, and 
other proper heraldic figures, when 
their extremities do not extend to 
the sides of the shield ; but such 
charges, at least in English Heraldry, 

are usually said to be " humetty." 

2 In the illustrative cuts, the stags' 
heads are erroneously represented 
contourng, i.e., turned to the sinister 
instead of the dexter. 



in the paternal arms. Thus, the escallops, or shells, 
which constitute the bearings of the House of Pringle, 
are carried by one branch of the family on a bend (Tor- 
sonce), by another on a saltire (Whytbank), and by a 
third on a chevron (Haining). 1 Again, the Scotts of 
Bevelaw and the Leslies of Balquhain converted the bend 

carried by their respective Chiefs into a fess, without 
any other addition or alteration, charging the fess with 
the figures which occupy the bend in the principal arms. 
Numerous systematic illustrations of this mode of differ- 
encing, including the families of Clifford and Cobham, 
are furnished by writers on English Heraldry. The 
practice of altering the number of the charges, either by 

1 While the Pringles of Whytbank 
bear five gold escallops on a black 
saltire, the family of Torwoodlee 
carry the same number of silver 
escallops on a blue saltire the latter 
charge being engrailed in both cases. 
The Pringles of Stitch el, on the other 
hand, do not use any of the ordi- 
naries their bearings being simply 
azure, three escallops, or. 

The escallop shell is the well-known 
badge of a pilgrim, from which word 

the surname of Priiiglc has been fan- 
cifully derived. 

" Give me my scallop-shell of quiet ; 
My staff of faith to walk upon ; 
My scrip of joy, immortal diet ; 
My bottle of salvation ; 
My gown of glory (hope's true gage) ; 
And thus I'll make my pilgrimage. " 
Sir Walter Italeigh. 

Towards the middle of the thir- 
teenth century, Pope Alexander iv. 
prohibited all but pilgrims who were 
truly noble from assuming escallop 
shells as armorial ensigns. 



way of diminution or increase, prevails to some extent 
among the French and other continental nations, but is 
of very rare occurrence in Scottish Heraldry. In his 
Jurisprudentia Heroica, Christyn mentions the bearings 
of the House of Clermont Tallart, in Dauphiny, viz., two 
silver keys, in saltire, on a red field, adding that the 
family of Chatto, as a cadet, carried only a single key, in 
bend. On the other hand, according to Pont, the Scot- 
tish family of Sydseuf, originally from France, carried 
argent, a fleur-de-lis, azure ; while Sydserf of Ruchlaw 
appears, from the Lyon Register, to bear three of these 
charges on a similar field. In like manner, the ancient 
arms of the Turnbulls of Bedrule, and also of Minto, 

consisted of a single bull's head, erased, sable ; but " of 
late," to use the language of Nisbet, " those of this name 
multiply the heads to three." 

4. A fourth mode of distinguishing cadets is by quar- 
tering other arms with the paternal bearings. This 
course, although questioned by some heraldic writers 
on the ground that the principal coat is not bruised, but 
repeated entire as borne by the head of the family, is 
admitted by both Nistat and Mackenzie. The former 


acknowledges that it is in accordance with the heraldic 
practice of Scotland and other nations, being " looked 
upon as a sufficient and regular brisure in the best of our 
families, and especially by second sons." He adds, how- 
ever, that " a second brother, though he differences him- 
self by quartering another coat with his paternal, yet he 
must always continue his father's brisure, he being a 
younger son of a principal family;" and that "the 
clearest way to make known the descents of families by 
arms, is for them to retain the congruent differences of 
their progenitors, although they quarter with the coats 
of other families as their own particular difference/' ] 
Sir George Mackenzie appears to vindicate the practice 
in question without any qualification. " Those cadets," 
he says, " who have their arms quartered with other arms 
need no difference (i.e., no ordinary mark of cadency), 
for the quartering or impaling is a sufficient differ- 

ence." 2 

Sir John Fern classifies quartered arms under three 
heads, viz., plain quartered, quartered, and quarterly- 
quartered coats, (l.) A plain-quartered coat is pro- 
duced by dividing the field into four parts, one coat-of- 
arms being repeated in the first and fourth quarters, and 
another in" the second and third. This is the proper 
arrangement of the armorial ensigns of the son of a 
gentleman by an heiress (in the heraldic sense) his 
father's arms occupying the principal position, Viz., the 
first and fourth quarters, and his mother's the second 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part iii. pp. 21, 22. 

2 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxi. 



and third. Thus, Mackenzie of Coul charges the first 
and fourth quarters of his escutcheon with the " Caberfae," 
or stag's head, which forms the paternal bearing of his 
clan ; the second and third quarters being occupied by 

a boar's head for Chisholm of Comar, the heiress of which 
family married the first of the Coul branch. In like 
manner, the Earl of Mansfield places the principal coat of 
Murray (three stars within a double tressure) in the first 
and fourth quarters, while the second and third are charged 
with three crosses, pattee, in consequence of the marriage 
of his ancestor, Sir Andrew Murray, to the daughter and 
heiress of Barclay of Balvaird, towards the beginning of 
the sixteenth century. Another course, to which Sir 
George Mackenzie objects, is followed by some cadets 
who are advanced to dignities, and who, " if they be not 
obliged to quarter the coat of some heretrix, for a differ- 
ence take crest or supporters of the family ou,t of which 
they are descended, and quarter with their paternal coat. 
As the Viscount of ^Kingston bears, first and fourth, the 
arms of Seton (three crescents within a double tressure), 
in the second and third, argent, a winged dragon, vert, 
vomiting fire, which dragon is the crest of his elder 



brother, the Earl of Winton." l In some cases, however, 
the paternal arms do not occupy the principal quarters of 

the shield. Thus, both in England and Scotland, the 
precedency is given to arms of special concession, which 
usually embrace some portion of the Royal ensigns. 2 

The escutcheons of Erskine, Earl of Kellie, Hay, Earl of 
Kinnoull, and Sandilands, Lord Torphichen, may be men- 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxiv. 

2 Another mode of marshalling is 
to place the " adclitament of honour" 
on an inescutcheon or surtout, as in 
the achievement of the Setons, Earls 
of Winton, where a coat of special 
concession a sword supporting an 
imperial crown is impaled with an 
ordinary coat of augmentation, viz. 
a star of twelve points for the title 

of Wiuton. By means of this arrange- 
ment, the position of the paternal 
arms is undisturbed ; but, on the 
other hand, an inescntcheon usually 
conceals some of the charges in the 
principal shield. 

A somewhat unusual arrangement 
occurs on the seal of James Sandi- 
lands, Lord Torphichen (1603), after- 
wards referred to, where a coat of 



tioned as illustrations of such postponement of the pa- 
ternal bearings. 1 Occasionally, moreover, the maternal 
arms are placed before the father's bearings, in conse- 
quence of their " more eminent nobility," as in the case 
of the Moutffomeries of Lainshaw, afterwards referred to 


as an illustration of a quarterly- quartered coat. 

(2.) The term quartered coat is applied to a shield in 
which the arms of more than two different families are 
marshalled together. Thus, the Marquis of Breadalbane 
carried three coats quarterly, viz., first and fourth, the 
paternal arms of Campbell (gyronny of eight) ; second, 

a fess checquy for Stewart ; and third, a lymphad (or 
galley) for Lorn. Sometimes four coats are carried, 
each of the quarters being differently charged, as in the 
escutcheon of Stuart, Earl of Traquair, which is thus 
blazoned: First, the paternal arms of Stuart; second, 
three garbs (wheat sheaves) for Buchan ; third, an orle, 

augmentation is impaled with the 
family arms, being placed in the sin- 
ister side of the escutcheon. Laing's 
Catalogue of Scottish Seals, No. 718. 

1 This arrangement, however, is 
not invariably followed. Thus, on 

the drawing-room ceiling at Kellie 
Castle, Fifeshire, we find the paternal 
arms of Erskine in the first and 
fourth quarters of the coat of Alex- 
ander third Earl of Kellie, impaled 
with that of his first Countess, Mary 
Kirkpatrick (e. 1660). 



with three martlets in chief, for Rutherford ; and fourth, 
a mullet for Traquair. 

(3.) A shield of arms is said to be quarterly-quartered 
(or counter-quartered), when one or more of its four 
areas or quarters are themselves quartered, in which case 
they are usually termed " grand quarters." Thus, the 
Montgomeries of Lainshaw, cadets of the House of 
Eglinton, carried quarterly, First and Fourth grand 

quarters counter-quartered : first and fourth, azure, a 
bend between six cross-crosslets, fitche, or, for the Earl- 
dom of Mar ; second and third, or, a fret, gules, for Lord 
Lyle, in consequence of Sir Niel Montgoinerie, second of 
Lainshaw, having married the daughter and heiress of 
the last Lord Lyle : Second and Third grand quarters 
also counter-quartered : first and fourth, azure, three 
fleurs-de-lis, or, for Montgomerie ; second and third, gules, 
three annulets, or, stoned azure, for Eglinton. 1 A pre- 

1 This is the blazon given by Nis- 
bet in his Essay on Armories, p. 101. 
In his larger work (Rijstem of Her- 

aldry, i. 377), he substitutes the 
arms of Mure of Skeldou (argent, on 
a fess azure, three stars of the first) 


cisely similar armorial arrangement was adopted by the 
eldest son of William Marquis of Douglas, by his second 
wife, on his marriage to the eldest daughter and heiress 
of James first Duke of Hamilton, in consequence of 
which he was created Duke of Hamilton, for life, in the 
year 16GO. In both of these examples, it will be ob- 
served that the paternal arms are deprived of their usual 

As a general rule, however, in the case of quartered 
coats, the paternal arms either occupy the principal posi- 
tion in the shield, or are placed surtout on an inescutcheon, 
as in the achievement of the Marquis of Tweeddale. 1 
The use of the inescutcheon appears to have anciently 
prevailed among the Emperors of Germany, and Guillim 
mentions an example in England as early as the reign 
of Eichard n. (1377-99). Towards the beginning of the 
fifteenth century, the same arrangement is exhibited on 
the seal of Lord Tweeddale's ancestor, Sir William Hay of 
Locherwort, who married the eldest daughter and co-heir 
of Sir Hew Gifibrd of Yester his arms being quarterly, 
first and fourth, azure, three cinquefoils, argent, for 
Eraser of Olivercastle, on account of a previous alli- 

for the second and third grand quar- Pepdie ; over all, an escutcheon, or, 

ters, and places the quartered coat of charged with an orle, azure, for Lan- 

Eglinton surtout. dell. " But these coats," says Sir 

1 Sir George Mackenzie objects to George, "might have been better mar- 

a different arrangement adopted by shalled thus, first and fourth, Pepdie, 

the Earl of Home, who bears quar- second and third, Landell, and the 

terly, first and fourth, vert, a lion Home arms surtout, or above all ; or, 

rampant, argent, armed and langued, first and fourth,Home, second.Pepdie, 

gules, for Home ; second and third, and third, Landell either of which 

argent, three papingoes (popinjays), had been more proper." Science of 

vert, beaked and membored, gules, for Heraldry, chap. xxiv. 



ance ; second and third, gules, three bars, ermine, for 
Gifford of Tester ; overall (surtout), argent, three escut- 
cheons, gules, the paternal arms of Hay. 1 The bearings 
of the three noble families of Erroll, Kinnoull, and 
Tweeddale may here be appropriately referred to, in 
illustration of three different modes of marshalling, 

which the most unskilled herald will acknowledge to be 
abundantly distinctive. While the Marquis of Tweeddale 
adopts the blazon already noticed, the Earl of Erroll, as 
head of the House of Hay, merely carries the paternal 
arms of the family. Again, the Earl of Kinnoull bears, 
first and fourth, azure, a unicorn, salient, argent, armed 
maned and unguled, or, within a bordure, of the last, 
charged with eight half thistles, vert, impaled with as 

1 Ou the rudely-executed seal of husband of an heiress even in ex- 
Sir William Hay of Tallo (Laing's 
Catalogue, No. 1223), appended to an 
indenture dated 1473, the arms of 
Hay are similarly carried surtout, the 
hearings of Fraser and Gifford, how- 
ever, being transposed. 

Such mode of marshalling must 

not be confounded with what is 
termed the " escutcheon of pretence" 
(anciently called a " fess target"), on 
which it is now customary for the 

pectation to bear her arms, placed 
in the centre of his own shield, in- 
stead of being impaled with them in 
the ordinary way. Most heraldic 
writers, however, are of opinion that, 
until the husband has issue by the 
heiress, and until the death of her 
father, he should only impale her 
arms, because he cannot, till then, 
transmit her inheritance to his pos- 


many half roses, gules, being a coat of augmentation ; 
second and third, argent, three escutcheons, gules, for 
Hay. 1 

The practice of transposing the quarters, by way of 
differencing cadets, prevails to a considerable extent in 
Germany, but is of comparatively rare occurrence either 
in France or the United Kingdom. It is strongly 
objected to by Nisbet, on the ground of its "prejudging 
principal families," and disturbing the " precedency due 
to arms." He is even more decidedly opposed to the 
custom followed on some parts of the Continent, and 
also in England, of marshalling a large number of 
different coats in one shield, which is thus converted into 
a " genealogical pennon." Like many other writers on 
Heraldry, he does not object to six or eight quarters, 
provided the bearer has an undoubted right to them, as 
coats of alliance or pretension ; and in accordance with 
this view, many families, entitled to at least a hundred 
quarters, select a few of the principal. In Germany, 
sometimes as many as thirty or forty different coats 
are accumulated in one shield, and, in England, a still 
greater number are occasionally used. Thus, at the 
funeral of the Viscountess Townsend, in 1770, a banner 
was earned before the hearse, exhibiting upwards of 
160 quarterings, while a still more complicated example 
of blazonry is to be found in the hall at Fawsley, in 

1 These arms occupy the first and of the family surname ; while the 

fourth grand quarters of Lord Kin- third consists of a coat of augmenta- 

noull's escutcheon. The second is tion (also for Drummond), viz., a lion's 

charged with three bars wavy for head erased, within a double tressure 

Drummond, which now forms a part flowered and counter-flowered. 



Northamptonshire, where a single escutcheon contains 
no fewer than 334 quarters ! 

As already stated, in the adoption of heraldic differ- 
ences, a secondary object is frequently attained by the 
commemoration of some honourable alliance, action, or 
employment, or other special circumstance. We have 
incidentally noticed several cases where marks of 
distinction, by means of quartering or otherwise, have 
been assumed in consequence of important alliances. 
One or two other instances may here be referred to. 
" Thus," in the words of Sir George Mackenzie, " the 
Lord Balmerino charges the chevron, which the Elphin- 
stone carries, with three buckles, because his mother 

was Monteith and daughter to the Laird of Carse, 
whose charge these are ; and the Lord Coupar, brother 
to Balmerino, did charge the chevron with three hearts, 
because his mother was daughter to Maxwell of 
Newark." 1 Again, when Hamilton of Innerwick, the 
earliest cadet of the House of Hamilton, married the 
daughter and heiress of Stewart of Cruxton, he placed 
a fess checquy between his three paternal cinquefoils, 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxi. 



which figures were afterwards surrounded by a bordure 
charged with eight buckles for De Glay of Innerwick, in 

consequence of another alliance. In the same manner, 
the first of the Cockburns of Ormiston added the 
chequered fess of Lindsay to the family arms (argent, 
three cocks, gules), on account of his marriage to the 
daughter and heiress of " Alexander de Lindsay, dominus 
de Ormistoun." 

As instances of differences assumed by cadets to per- 
petuate noble actions, we may mention the following. 
The armorial ensigns of the Grahams of Inchbrakie, 
descended from the House of Montrose, consist of a 

broken dyke, or wall, fesswise, with a rose in base, and 
three escallops on a chief (the family cognizance) the 


dyke having been adopted to commemorate the valour 
of a remote ancestor, in making a breach in the Roman 
wall erected by the Emperor Severus between the Forth 
and Clyde, which for ages bore the name of " Graham's 
Dyke." Again, the Binnings of Easter-Binning placed 
a waggon on the engrailed bend carried by the Chief of 
the name (Binning of that Ilk), because one of the 
family, with his seven sons, concealed in a waggon of 
hay, surprised and took the Castle of Linlithgow when 
in the possession of the English, during the reign of 
David II. 

Allusions to honourable offices and employments occur 
in the escutcheon of the Bruces of Balcaskie, and in 
those of at least two branches of the family of Wood. 
Sir William Bruce of Balcaskie made the chief in his 
paternal coat wavy, " to show his kindness to and his 
skill in the art of Navigation." In like manner, Wood 
of Balbigno added, for difference, two keys tied with 

strings to a bough of the paternal oak-tree, in reference 
to his office as Thane of Fettercairn ; while Wood of 
Largo placed the tree between two ships, under sail, as 
Admiral to King James in. 



Sometimes the same family considerably varied the 
mode of differencing, of which a curious example is 
given by Nisbet in the case of the Setons of Cariston. 
" The first of this family," he says, " was John, second 
son of George Lord Seton and his lady, Elizabeth Hay, 
daughter to Lord John Tester. He carried first, or, 
three crescents, within a double tressure counterflowered, 
gules ; and for his difference, as a younger son of the 
House of Seton, charged one of the crescents with a 
bezant, as on the roof of Samson's Hall in the House of 
Seton : he married Isabel Balfour, heiress of Cariston, 

and their son George Seton of Cariston, laid aside the 
bezant, and placed in the centre of his paternal arms, 
between the three crescents, an otter's head, for Balfour, 
as in Mr. Thomas Crawford's MS. of blazons ; and after- 
wards the family carried quarterly, first and fourth, 
Seton ; second and third, gules, on a chevron, or, between 
two otters' heads, erased, in chief, and a fleur-de-lis 
in base, of the second, an otter's head, erased, of the 
first." 1 

1 Essay on Armories, p. 108. arms in accordance with the second of 

For sometime past, the represen- the above blazons, viz., an otter's head 
tatives of this family have carried in the centre of the paternal arms. 




The adoption of a part, or the whole, of the armo- 
rial ensigns of over-lords or superiors, was formerly 
a common practice both in this country and on the 
Continent, and sometimes served the double purpose of 
indicating gratitude and dependence, and of differencing 
the bearer from the head of his family. As examples of 
this ancient custom, Camden refers to the fact of many 
Cheshire and Leicestershire families bearing the garbs (or 
wheat-sheaves) of the Earls of Chester, and the cinque- 

foils of the old Earls of Leicester. The same practice 
has largely prevailed on this side of the Tweed. Thus, 
in Annandale, the chief and saltire of the Bruces are 

carried (of different tinctures, and with additional 
figures) by the Jardines, Kirkpatricks, Johnstons, and 
other families. In Renfrew, Ayr, and other counties 


where the possessions of the Stewarts were situated, a 
fess, a bend, or a chevron, checquy, forms a common 
bearing ; such figures being carried by the Lords Semple, 

the Houstons of that Ilk, the Brisbanes of Bishoptown, 
the Halls of Fulbar, the Flemings of Barrochau, the 
Shaws of Bargarran, the Freelands of Freeland, and 
other families. 1 Finally, the lion of the old territorial 
Earls of Fife and Angus, are frequently to be found 
in the armorial ensigns of families connected with the 
counties of the same names ; while in Teviotdale and 
other parts of Scotland formerly possessed by the great 
House of Douglas, the star, or mullet, constitutes a 
pretty common bearing. 

The occasional practice of assuming an entirely 

1 According to Nisbet, Shaw of 
Bargarran carried, azure, a fess 
checquy, argent and gules, between 
three covered cups, or. The fess, 
however, does not appear in the coat 
of arms on the papers enclosing the 
thread manufactured by Lady Bar- 
garran and her daughter, in the year 
1725 (see Chambers' Domestic Annals 
of Scotland, iii. 511). Of the other 
families here specified, the Semples, 
Houstons, and Brisbanes carried a 

chevron checquy (varying in its tinc- 
tures) between three bugle-horns, 
three martlets, and three cushions 
respectively ; the Freelands a bend 
checquy between two bears' heads 
(Pro. of the Soc. of Scot. Antiq. ii. 
319) ; and the Halls a fess checquy 
(or and gules) between three cranes' 
heads. The Flemings also bore a 
fess checquy (argent and azure ?) 
surmounted by a bend, with a mart- 
let in base (Nisbet's Heraldry, i. 151). 



different coat of arms from that pertaining to the 
bearer's surname is very naturally challenged by Sir 
George Mackenzie, who refers to the Scotts of Balwearie 
canying different arms from the House of Buccleuch, 
and also to the family of Auchinleck of Balmanno bearing 
an embattled cross (the arms of Balmanno), while three 

bars were carried by Auchinleck of that Ilk ; " but 
this," he adds, " was occasioned by cadets marrying 
heiresses, whose arms they assumed without using their 
own, seeing they got no patrimony from their prede- 
cessors." 1 The learned author would have been more 
correct in stating that the Scotts of Buccleuch carry diffe- 
rent arms from the family of Balwearie, seeing that the 
latter always bore their old paternal ensigns, viz., argent, 
three lions' heads erased, gules. 2 On the other hand, the 
ancestor of the great border clan, on his marriage to the 
daughter and heiress of Murdiston of that Ilk (in the 
reign of Eobert the Bruce), laid aside the lions' heads, 
and assumed the arms of his wife or, on a bend azure, 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxi. 

2 A cJtevron is placed between the 
three lions' heads on the Seals of Sir 

Michael (1292) and Sir Walter (1412) 
Scott of Balwearie (Laing's Catalogue, 
Nos. 720 and 721). 



a star betwixt two crescents of the first, which are now 
carried, with various suitable differences, by most of the 
existing branches of the House of Scott. 

The abandonment of the paternal arms for those of 
some other family can hardly be regarded as a mode of 
differencing in the proper sense of the term, and is, more- 
over, quite subversive of the primary object of Heraldry, 
viz., the permanent association of certain charges with 
particular surnames, or at least particular blood. Arms, 
indeed, are sometimes a more certain indication of con- 
sanguinity than surnames; because two families, between 
whom no blood-relationship exists, may bear the same 
name. Thus, the common origin of the Stewarts and 
Boyds is denoted by the fess checquy which both carry ;* 
while, .on the other hand, the different extraction of the 
family of Eoss of Balnagowan and of the Lords Ross is 
indicated by totally different bearings ; the former being 

three lions rampant, and the "latter a chequered chevron 
between three ivater-bougets* quartered with the coat of 

1 The supposed consanguinity of 
the Murrays and Douglases, in con- 
sequence of the similarity of their 
arms, is referred to in Wyntoun's 

Cronylc'd (Book vm. chap. vii. lines 
149, etseq.) 

2 The title of Lord Ross which 
must not be confounded with the old 



Melville. In like manner, in the escutcheons of the 
Blairs of that Ilk and the Blairs of Balthayock, while the 
tinctures are, no doubt, similar, the charges are entirely 
different the one family bearing nine mascles on a 
saltire, and the other a chevron between three torteaux. 
These two families have long contended for the chieftain- 


ship, and the controversy is said to have been adjusted 
by King James vi. ordering that the elder male repre- 
sentative, for the time being, should precede the younger. 1 
In the shields of the Stewarts and Boyds, the tinctures of 
the field as well as of the fess checquy do not correspond, 
thus constituting a marked difference ; but it occasionally 

Earldom of the same name became 
extinct in the person of William, 
14th Baron, in the year 1754. The 
supposed English descent of the 
family is confirmed by their armorial 
ensigns, the water-bouget being a 
very common heraldic charge on the 
other side of the Border. It consisted 
of a yoke with two pouches of leather 
attached, for the conveyance of water 
to an army, and has been very differ- 
ently drawn at different periods. (See 
Glossary of Heraldry, p. 323.) The 
chequered chevron is an indication 
of vassalage to the House of Stewart. 
Nisbet's System of Heraldry, i. 407. 
1 A keen dispute of a similar kind, 
between the Burnets of Barns, in 
Peeblesshire, and the family of Leys 
in the north, is said to have been 
decided, about the middle of last 
century, in favour of the former, by 
Sir Robert Douglas (author of the 
Peerage and Baronaye of Scotland), 
to whom the charters of the two 
families were submitted for exami- 

nation. While the Barns' coat-armo- 
rial is blazoned argent, three holly 
leaves, vert, and a chief, azure, the 
Baronets of Leys carry three similar 
leaves in chief, and a hunting-horn, 
in base, sable, garnished gules ; the 
horn, and also the supporters (a 
highlander and a greyhound), having 
reference, according to Sir George 
Mackenzie, to the fact of the family 
being the " King's Foresters " in the 
north. Both families, however, use 
the same crest and motto, viz., a hand 
with a knife, pruning a vine-tree, 
proper, surmounted by the words, 
" Virescit vuluere virtus." This 
crest and motto owe their origin to 
Mary Queen of Scots, and were pro- 
bably intended to allude to her own 
unhappy condition. " When she was 
in England," says Bell, in his life of 
the Scottish Queen, " she embroid- 
ered, for the Duke of Norfolk, a hand 
with a sword in it, cutting vines, 
with the motto, ' Virescit vulnere 
virtus.' " 


happens that two families, bearing different surnames, 
carry coats -armorial which are precisely similar, as in 
the case of the Setons and the Edmonstones of Dun- 
treath, whose common descent has been conjectured 
from the identity of their arms, viz., or, three crescents 
within a double tressure, flowered and counterflowered, 
gules. In blazoning the bearings of the different fami- 
lies of Edmonstone, in the first volume of his System of 
Heraldry, Nisbet does not, in any instance, surround the 
three crescents with the Koyal tressure, and, in the case 
of Duntreath, he places an annulet in the centre of the 
shield. This circumstance is referred to by the writer 
of the account of the Duntreath family in the Appendix 
to the second volume of Nisbet (p. 158), where mention 
is made of the seal of Sir William Edmonstone of Cul- 
loden and Duntreath (who died in 1473), as exhibiting 
the tressure, to indicate his Royal descent, through his 
mother and grandmother, who were both " daughters of 
the Crown." In addition to the tressure, however, Sir 
William's seal exhibits an annulet in the fess point, 1 but 
that figure is no longer carried in the Duntreath escut- 
cheon. The use, by two different families, of a coat- 
armorial in which both the tinctures and the charges are 
identical, defeats one of the principal objects of the 
noble science. In the case in question, different crests 
and mottoes are, no doubt, carried, but the distinctive 
and essential portion of a heraldic achievement is the 
shield, and not the exterior ornaments. The well-known 
arms of the English Veres, Earls of Oxford, are quarterly, 

1 See Laing's Catalogue, No. 30o. 


gules and or, with a silver mullet in tlie first quarter. 
The author of the Introduction to the sixth edition of 

Guillim's Heraldry, after noticing the legendary origin 
of the star, as detailed by more imaginative writers, says 
that " it was only a distinction in the arms of that family 
from the arms of the Lord Say's family (a flourishing 
House at that time in the same service), which, except- 
ing the star, did bear quarterly, gules and or, 1 the same 
with Vere, who was obliged to difference from the Lord 
Say ; for two different families in one nation could not 
bear one coat without some addition/' 

In olden times, the right to a particular coat-of-arms 
was sometimes very keenly and formally contested by 
rival claimants. Thus, in the year 1346, Nicholas Lord 
Burnell and Sir Robert de Morley appeared in the same 
arms at the siege of Calais, which led to a suit in the 
Court of Chivalry, held upon the spot. 2 About forty 
years later, during the reign of Richard IL, a famous 
heraldic controversy took place, before the High Con- 

1 The bearings of Lord Say appear the converse of those of the Veres, 
to have been quarterly, or and gules, l See Archceoloyical Journal, ii. 

not gules and or ; in other words, 330, 396. 


stable and Earl Marshal of England, between Richard, 
Lord Scrope of Bolton, and Sir Robert Grosvenor, a 
knight of the county of Chester ; the question at issue 
being the right to bear, as a coat-armorial, " azure, a 

bend or." The Constable pronounced sentence in favour 
of Scrope, but inasmuch as his opponent had adduced 
good presumptive evidence in support of his claim, he 
was allowed to carry the same coat " within a bor- 
dure, argent." Not being satisfied with this judgment, 
Grosvenor appealed to the King, who decided that the 
arms in question belonged exclusively to Scrope, and 
annulled the ordinance of the Constable with respect to 
Grosvenor, considering that " a bordure is not a suffi- 
cient difference between two strangers in the same 
kingdom, but only between cousin and cousin related 
by blood." 1 

1 The original record of this cele- evidence is possessed of peculiar in- 

brated contest, with the rival plead- terest from the circumstance of its 

ings and depositions, is still preserved embracing the depositions of most 

in the Tower of London. In the of the illustrious men of the age, 

year 1832, a literal copy, accom- including John of Gaunt, Sir Walter 

paniedby illustrative documents, was Blunt, Owen Glendower, and the 

published by Sir Harris Nicolas. The poet Chaucer. 


Of other modes of distinguishing cadets, we may 
mention the adoption of different Crests, without any 
alteration being made on the charges in the escutcheon. 
Speaking of the Germans, among whom this practice 
largely prevails, Christyn says, " interdum arma solo 
cimerio discrepant ;" and he illustrates his statement by 
a notice of the various families descended from the 
House of Burgundy. As a single example, we may refer 
to the Electoral Dukes of Saxony, whose shield was 
timbred with no fewer than eight helmets, surmounted 
by as many crests. This mode of differencing has been 
rarely followed in Scotland. Doubtless, the heraldic 
practice of that country has always allowed a consider- 
able amount of freedom in the changing of crests, which, 
however, Nisbet considers to be " but an ornament of 
coats of arms, and so more of the nature of a device than 
a fixed piece of hereditary armorial bearings." 1 For that 
very reason, a systematic modification of the charges in 
the escutcheon, forms a much more satisfactory mode of 
distinguishing cadets than a change of the crest, which 
even the head of the family does not necessarily retain 


The Lyon King-of-Arms enjoys the high and peculiar 
privilege of granting heraldic ensigns to certain persons 
who do not happen to inherit these distinctions from 
their ancestors. As already stated, this power appears 
to have been indirectly conferred upon him by the Act 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part iv. p. ] 0. 


of 1592, which authorizes him "to put inhibition to 
all the common sort of people not worthy, by the law 
of arms, to bear any signs-armorial ;" while the later 
Statute of Charles II. expressly declares that he may 
bestow such bearings on "virtuous and w T ell-deserving 
persons." In the absence of any explanation of these 
rather indefinite words, their interpretation is left, as a 
matter of course, to the discretion of the Lord Lyon or 
of his Depute. On " being interrogated, if there is any 
restriction observed with respect to the class or descrip- 
tion of persons to whom a grant of arms should be 
allowed," Mr. Tait depones, " That such grants are not 
refused in any case where the persons applying are 
respectable, which the deponent understands to be con- 
formable to the practice now observed in all other 
Colleges of Arms." For some time past, it must be ad- 
mitted that, besides character and reputation, there has 
existed another important qualification for the bearing of 
armorial ensigns in the ." Regina Pecunia" of the Roman 
bard, which has been humorously described as possess- 
ing marvellous power in procuring a copious allowance 
of heraldic "or" and " argent." Indeed, the complicated 
charges of modern times appear to be intended to bear 
some proportion to the charges t of another kind, for the 
exaction of which our heraldic authorities have some- 
times been pretty severely censured. " In our days/' says 
Bailey (who wrote at the end of last century), "all are 
accounted gentlemen that have money ; and if a man 
has no coat-of-arms, the King-of-Arms can sell him one." 
An amusing writer of our own day thus expresses him- 


self in a somewhat similar strain : " To a Coat-of-Arms 
no man, literally speaking, has pretensions, who is not 
the representative of somebody that bore arms in the old 
English wars ; but when the necessity for military virtue 
decreased, arms gave way to the gown, and shields had 
honourable, but fantastic augmentations, for the peaceful 
triumphs of lawyers and statesmen. Meanwhile, com- 
merce was on the increase, and there came up a new 
power in the shape of pounds, shillings, and pence, which 
was to be represented also by its coat-of-arms, how 
absurdly, need not be added, though the individuals who 
got their lions and their shields behind the counter, were 
often excellent men, who might have cut as great a figure 
in battle as the best, had they lived in other times. At 
length, not to have a military coat was to be no gentle- 
man ; and then the heralds fairly sold achievements at 
so much the head." 1 The same author, however, openly 
professes to look with deep interest on really old coats-of- 
arms, if only for the sake of their antiquity, but especially 
when they happen to be associated with names which are 

" Familiar in our mouths as household words :" 

and he even admits that heraldic devices, "of which 
most people are observed to be fonder than they choose 
to confess, might be reconciled to the progress of know- 
ledge, or made, at any rate, the ground of a pleasing and 
not ungraceful novelty." 

The duties of the Lyon-Clerk, in connexion with the 
matriculation of Arms, are thus set forth in the Eeport 

1 The Town, l>y Leigh Hunt, i. 85. 


of the year 1822 : "Every application for a grant of 
arms, or for recording a genealogy, is made to the Lyon 
Office, either personally, by the applicant himself, or 
through the medium of an agent, or by correspondence. 
It is the duty of the Lyon-Clerk, on these occasions, to 
attend and hold personal interviews with the applicant 
or his agent, and to conduct the correspondence with 
them ; to furnish them with the use of the records, and 
to afford every facility and assistance in making the 
necessary searches ; to receive the documents produced 
by the applicant to instruct the claim, and, where these 
are referred to, to make the necessary examination and 
searches in the records of the General Eegister House 
and otherwise ; and to take care that the arms are 
properly described and illuminated in the patent, and 
entered in the Register in the precise terms thereof. 
It is also his duty, as Keeper of the Register of Armo- 
rial Bearings, Genealogies, Manuscripts, and Books of 
Arms, to allow inspection of these to all who may have 
occasion to make searches or inquiries, and to give 
out, from the records, certified extracts and emblazon- 
ments when required." 1 

At present, the usual mode of procedure is for the 
applicant to lodge a petition at the Lyon Office, signed 
by his agent, both in the case of patents, or original 
grants, and matriculations, i.e., where the petitioner 
happens to be a descendant, or cadet, of a family whose 
arms are already on record. In the former case, the 
applicant sets forth his descent for one or two genera- 

1 Report on the Office and Court of the Lord Lyon (1822), p. 24. 


tions ; while, in the case of a matriculation, evidence of 
pedigree must be produced to " instruct the claim." If 
a person of the name of Douglas, for example, should 
make an application for a coat-armorial, and be able to 
prove his connexion with the great house whose name 
he bears, he obtains a grant of the family ensigns, with 
certain suitable marks of difference, the peculiar nature 
of which must, of course, depend on the nearness of his 
kin, and other circumstances. If, on the other hand, 
his pedigree is involved in obscurity, only a part of the 
Douglas arms is taken as the foundation of his escut- 
cheon, which is further rendered distinctive by the 
introduction of other appropriate charges. 1 Again, where 
the applicant happens to bear a name which has hitherto 
not enjoyed the distinction of relative and peculiar 
heraldic ensigns, he is allowed to suggest a coat-of-arms, 
which is submitted to the examination of the Lyon- 
Depute, and granted to the petitioner, provided it be 
correct in point of tincture and other particulars, and 
not already carried by any other family. If, however, 
he should not think proper to suggest his future " bear- 
ings," it then becomes the duty of the authorities of the 
Lyon Office to compose a suitable coat-of-arms. 

To the first and last of these three modes of procedure, 
there does not appear to be the slightest objection. In 
the second instance, however, it may be questioned 
whether the authorities are justified in granting any 

1 An individual of the name of had been given to him in charity, is 
Douglas, who had fallen back in the said to have engraved the bleeding 
world, on commencing business in heart of the clan upon his bills en- 
Glasgow with half-a-crown which signed with half a crown ! 


portion of an existing coat-armorial, merely because the 
applicant happens to bear the corresponding surname. 
The adoption of the arms of ancient families, with slight 
alterations or additions by persons whose relation to such 
families consist only in similarity of name, has often been 
most deservedly censured. Besides other " disorders and 
confusions," the rescinded Act of 1662 notices the un- 
warrantable custom of " mean persons, who can nowise 
derive their succession from the families whose names 
they bear," assuming the relative armorial ensigns ; and 
expressly ordains, " that no man carry the Arms of any 
noble family of his name, except he make it appear to 
the Lyon (who is thereby declared to be the only judge 
competent in such cases and debates) that he is descended 
of that family." The mere circumstance of possessing a 
certain surname cannot, of course, be regarded as an 
unassailable presumption that the bearer has regularly 
inherited it from his ancestors. By the positive denial 
of such an inference, and the consequent refusal of the 
corresponding armorial bearings, a bond fide Gordon or 
Hamilton might, no doubt, sometimes be unfairly de- 
prived of his paternal ensigns ; but, on the other hand, 
by invariably following the opposite course, the privileges 
of ancient blood might be unjustly invaded, while the 
capricious assumption of surnames would assuredly be 
indirectly encouraged. Under these circumstances, there- 
fore, it will, perhaps, be generally admitted, that only a 
very limited portion of an existing coat-of-arms should 
be assigned to an applicant for heraldic distinctions, who 
merely happens to bear the corresponding name. 


In the pages of the Lyon Register, however, we find 
numerous instances of armorial grants, in which the 
principle in question has been to a great extent, if not 
entirely overlooked. Thus, in the year 1810, the Record 
bears that a gentleman of the name of Carstairs, " by the 
special consent of James Carstairs Bruce, Esquire, now 
of Balchrystie, the representative of the ancient family 
of Carstairs of Kilconquhar, in the County of Fife, is 
allowed to carry arms as a cadet of that family, from 
which he appears to be descended viz., azure, on a 
chevron, argent, betwixt three sunflowers slipped, proper, 
for Carstairs, as many buckles of the first for Leslie, by 
the express desire of his cousin- german, John Leslie, 
Esquire, Professor of Mathematics in the University of 
Edinburgh " ! Again, in several comparatively recent 
instances, the arms of distinguished families accom- 
panied, no doubt, by certain marks of difference have 
been conferred on persons bearing the relative surnames, 
but of whose descent no satisfactory evidence appears 
to have been produced. In one case, the pedigree of the 
patentee is only deduced from his grandfather ; while 
in another, he is vaguely asserted to be sprung from " a 
son" of some remote ancestor of the House whose name 
lie bears ! 

In a good many entries, matrimonial alliance is set 
forth as the ground for conferring certain charges, but 
except in the case of a marriage to an heiress (in the 
heraldic sense) the propriety of such grants is somewhat 
questionable. Thus, in the year 1813, the following 
Arms were assigned to a Glasgow merchant, named 


Gordon Azure, three boars' heads, erased, or, langued 
gules, within a bordure, engrailed, argent ; and for mark 
of cadency, in the centre of the field, a lion rampant, 
argent, " to denote his respect for and alliance by mar- 
riage with the family of Gray of Cairntyne and Dalmar- 
nock in Lanarkshire." Before the expiration of the year, 
however, a fresh grant is entered in the Register, in 
which the lion does not appear the original patent 
being declared irregular in two particulars, viz., 1st, 
in assigning as a mark of cadency the complete bear- 
ings of Lord Gray, to denote alliance with the Grays of 
Cairntyne ; idly, in making reference in the record to 
the titles and arms of the Cairntyne family, before their 
armorial privileges had been duly ascertained and recog- 
nised in the Lyon Office. 1 A somewhat curious exten- 
sion of the "matrimonial" allusion occurs in the escut- 
cheon granted, in the year 1824, to Mr. Hagart of 
Bantaskine, in the second and third quarters of which 
we find the bearings of the family of M'Caul, " as a mark 
of regard and affection for the memory of the patentee's 
wife's maternal uncle of that name" ! Again, in 1849, 
in addition to a displayed eagle charged with a cinque- 
foil as a mark of difference, the coat-armorial devised 
for Mr. Ramsay of Barnton embraces the time-honoured 
ensigns of Sandilands and Douglas, "in respect of his 
connexion by marriage" with the family of Lord Tor- 
phichen ! ! 

A Patent of Arms is written on a sheet of vellum, 

1 A grant of arms to the Grays in the Lyon Register, in the year 
of Cairntyne subsequently appears 1819. 


and sets forth the descent of the grantee, along with a 
(verbal) blazon of the conceded bearings, which are 
illuminated on the margin of the writ a duplicate of 
the whole, with the exception of the purely formal parts, 
being engrossed in the Lyon Eegister. The Patent is 
signed by the Lord Lyon, or, more generally, by his 
Depute. In the case of a matriculation, a full extract 
of the entry in the Kegister is given to the applicant on 
stamped paper, signed by the Lyon-Clerk, or Lyon- 
Depute, and is accompanied by a,n emblazonment of the 
Arms on a sheet of vellum, with a relative certificate 
which is similarly signed. 

In the grants of armorial bearings in the Lyon Register, 
there is a considerable variety in the terms of the Desti- 
nation. The Arms are usually conferred on the Patentee 
and his heirs. Occasionally, however, they are limited 
to the heirs, or the heirs-male of his body ; sometimes 
to the heirs under a deed of entail, or the descendants of 
a particular marriage ; and not unfrequently the follow- 
ing proviso forms a part of the destination : " with due 
and proper differences according to the laws of arms, the 
same being first matriculated in this public Register." 
In a few rare instances, the use of some of the charges is 
confined to the patentee himself, as in the case of the 
decoration of the Imperial Order of the Legion of Honour, 
which appears on a canton in the escutcheon .conferred 
upon Mr. Dickson of Clockbriggs, in 1856. In the case 
of grants to Heiresses, the arms are emblazoned on a 
lozenge unaccompanied by a crest, in accordance with a 
well-known rule of Heraldry ; but a suitable provision is 


usually made to meet the contingency of heirs-male, as 
in the following entry, in 1837, relative to the arms of 
Mrs. Eleanor Bethune of Balfour, spouse of Colonel Drink- 
water, only daughter of Charles Congalton of that Ilk, 
and heir of tailzie and of provision of her deceased 
brother, Gilbert Congalton or Bethune : Quarterly, 1st 
and 4th azure, a fess between three mascles or ; 2d and 3d 
argent, on a chevron, sable, an otter's head erased of the 
first " to be borne by the Patentee and her heirs-female 
in a lozenge ; but in the event of heirs-male succeeding to 
the estate, above the shield is to be placed a helmet be- 
fitting their degree, etc. Crest, an otter's head, erased, 
argent ; Motto, De Bonnaire." In like manner, a few 
years later, in the case of another heiress Miss Mar- 
garet Anne Kellie a similar arrangement is made, the 
grant being immediately followed by another in favour 
of the lady's husband, Mr. George Kellie-M'Callum, who 
is authorized, in respect of his marriage, to carry the 
Kellie arms over his own in a shield of pretence, pro- 
vision being made for the heirs of the marriage bearing 
the coats of M'Callum and Kellie quarterly. 

A curious case involving the possession of a grant 
of arms occurred not many months ago in the English 
Court of Exchequer. A certain Joseph Stubs of War 
rington, in return for the solid " consideration" of 79, 
13s., obtained a Patent of Arms from the College of 
Heralds, which extended the right to wear the coat to 
the two sons of the deceased brother of the patentee, 
who himself happened to have no lineal descendants. 
In the year 1860, shortly before his death, he made a 


will, in which he left absolutely to his wife all his house- 
hold goods, books, pictures, plate, etc., under which be- 
quest, when she became his widow, she claimed the grant 
of the College of Arms. It was argued on behalf of the 
sons of the testator's brother, who were the plaintiffs in 
the action, that the patent belonged to them ; but, in 
the course of the discussion, Mr. Baron Bramwell said, 
that it did not appear that they had ever agreed to wear 
the arms, and jocularly asked, whether the Earl Marshal 
can " inflict" arms on a man without his consent ? The 
Court, however, held that, besides being entitled to bear 
the arms, the widow had a right to retain the grant to 
justify the use of them ; that it was not an instrument 
of such a character that any one could specifically claim 
it, like a patent of Peerage ; but suggested that the 
plaintiffs might perhaps file a bill in Chancery, to pre- 
vent the widow from destroying or defacing the docu- 

The Lyon Register embraces a few entries of arms, of 
which no record had been made when they were ori- 
ginally granted. Thus, in the year 1820, on the pro- 
duction of a Patent of Arms, dated 29th November 
1700, by Sir Alexander Erskine of Cambo, Lord Lyon 
King-at-Arms, in favour of Sir William Scott of Harden, 
a relative insertion is duly made in the Register, in 
consequence of the grant not having been entered at the 
proper time ; and it may be interesting to mention, that 
the application for registration was made by " Walter 
Scott of Abbotsford, Esquire, one of the Principal Clerks 
of Session." Again, as late as 1849, a similar entry 


appears relative to the arms of the Bank of Scotland, 
originally granted by the same Lord Lyon in the year 
1701. 1 

In 1825, we find a curious insertion respecting the 
forfeited ensigns of Andrew Fletcher of Saltoun, which 
had been deleted from the Lyon Register " upon his for- 
faulture in the Justice Court, 4th January 1686." The 
record bears, that " although the said Andrew was by 
Act of Parliament restored in the year 1690, yet as no 
re-entry of the armorial ensigns of the 'chief of his family 
had been made upon the said Register subsequent to the 
said restoration, the same are now, upon petition to that 
effect by (his great-grandnephew) Andrew Fletcher, the 
representative of the House of Saltoun, here matricu- 
lated of new," viz., sable, a cross flory betwixt four 
escallops, argent. 

A few examples occur of what may be termed amended 
Matriculations, either in consequence of certain errors in 
the original grants, or for the purpose of adding sup- 
porters, and making other alterations. Occasionally, 
however, when the change is not very extensive, it is 
merely recorded in a marginal note, as in the case of the 
additional crest and motto granted by the Lord Lyon, in 
1860, to Mr. Mitchell-Innes of Ayton the original grant 
to his father having been made twenty years previously. 

Besides grants and matriculations, the Register con- 

1 The later volumes of the Register and the Faculty of Advocates. In 

contain a few other grants to Com- the case of the Educational Institute, 

pauies, Corporations, etc.; such as the arms are granted to " the Gene- 

the Edinburgh and Glasgow Bank, ral Committee of Management and 

the Educational Institute of Scotland, their successors in office." 


tains one or two entries styled Exemplifications, relating 
to arms originally granted on the other side of the Tweed. 
The bearings of Mr. Watson Taylor are thus recorded in 
the year 1815, on the authority of a relative warrant 
transmitted from the English College of Heralds. In 
like manner, in the year 1851, a suitable entry is made, 
on the application of Mr. Carrick Moore of Corswall, in 
virtue of a grant of arms to his brother, Sir John Moore, 
in 1804, under the hands of the three English Kings-of- 
Arms, the destination being to the patentee and his 
descendants, and the descendants of his late father. 

In the year 1836, the Eecord furnishes an example 
which is probably unique of the substitution of a Scot- 
tish for an English grant, in the case of the Kev. John 
George Storie, Vicar of Camberwell, in Surrey, on the 
ground that he is descended from a Eenfrewshire family, 
and is " desirous to renew his connexion with Scotland, 
and to have the Lord Lyon's authority to bear and use 
such armorial ensigns as might by his Lordship be found 
suitable, and to discontinue those formerly registered to 
his family in the College of Arms, London/' The bear- 
ings granted on the occasion are : Argent, a lion ram- 
pant, double-queued, purpure, within a tressure flowered 
of the same. 

Any one who has paid the slightest attention to the 
subject of Heraldry, must be perfectly familiar with the 
frightful perversions of the " noble science" which have 
occurred in modern times. Instead of the chaste and 
simple devices which figuratively represented the noble 
actions of our ancestors " in the brave days of old," we 


have to lament the introduction of a complicated and 
unmeaning system of blazonry. More than one writer 
has noticed the connexion that so long existed between 
Heraldry and Gothic Architecture, and it may be re- 
marked that the almost simultaneous debasement of both 
sciences, constitutes a curious parallelism in their history. 1 
Many of the numerous coats-of-arms granted by the 
English heralds as far back as the time of Queen Eliza- 
beth, afford striking examples of unseemly innovations, 
which gradually increased till the days of George in., 
when the worst possible heraldic taste appears to have 
prevailed. Occasional exceptions are, no doubt, to be 
found, especially in the course of the seventeenth century. 
Some of the armorial ensigns designed by the worthy 
Camden, who departed this life in 1623, are said to be 
extremely appropriate. The coat which he granted to 
the family of Pitt, refers to their employment in the 
Exchequer, and is blazoned thus : Sable, a fess checquy, 
argent and azure, between three bezants (gold coins). 2 

1 "The Styles of blazonry admit of as any panelling or tracery in the 

classification like those of Gothic kingdom." (Cambridge Antiq. Soc. 

Architecture. The bare deviceless Publications, No. iv. p. 11, by H. A. 

ordinaries agree with the sturdy pier Woodham, Esq.) 
and flat buttress of the Jforman age ; See also an interesting essay " On 

the progress of ornament uniting still Heraldry and its connexion with 

with chasteness of design may be Gothic Architecture," read before the 

called Early English ; the fourteenth " Institute of British Architects," in 

century exhibits the perfection of 1836, by Mr. W. L. Donaldson, and 

both sciences, as displayed in the Dallaway's Heraldry in England, pp. 

highest degree of Decoration consist- 175, 321. 

ent with purity ; and the mannerism 2 The royal family of Stuart (or 

of Henry vm.'s time, with its crowd- Steward) bore a fess checquy, in 

ed field and accumulated charges, is allusion to their name, which they 

as essentially Florid and flamboyant derived from their ancient office 



Again, the two crescents and the fleur-de-lis which were 
granted to Sir Cloudesley Shovel, in the year 1692, form 

a most suitable memorial of two victories over the Turks 
and one over the French. In some cases, perhaps, as 
Mr. Lower charitably suggests, the odious coats-armorial 
of the last and the present centuries, may owe their 
origin to those " personages who dictated to the heralds 
what ensigns would be most agreeable to themselves ;' J1 
but surely the authorities of the College of Arms were 
bound to have fulfilled the duties of their honourable 
office, by interdicting the adoption of any grossly in 
appropriate devices. 

Along with a very suitable escutcheon a fess wavy 
(emblematical of the sea) between two polar stars the 
following quaint and somewhat questionable crest was 
granted by Queen Elizabeth to Sir Francis Drake : A 
ship under reef, drawn round a globe, by a cable-rope, 
by a hand issuing out of the clouds. The arms devised, 
in 1785, for the family of another illustrious navigator, 
cannot be regarded as even an approach to a heraldic 

the chequered fess representing 
the Steward's board. The chequers 
still frequently to be seen at the 

sides of tavern doors have a similar 
1 Curiosities of Heraldry, p. 177. 



coat, being neither more nor less than a geographical 
chart viz., azure, two polar stars, or ; a sphere on the 
plane of meridian ; north pole elevated, circles of latitude 
for every ten degrees, and of longitude for every fifteen ; 
showing the Pacific Ocean between 60 and 240 west ; 
bounded on one side by America, and on the other by 
Asia and New Holland, in memory of the discoveries 
made in that ocean by Captain Cook, so very far beyond 
all former navigators his track being marked by red 
lines! 1 The following arms granted, in 1760, to the 
family of Tetlow, seated at Haughton in Lancashire, 
are assuredly a delightful specimen : Azure, on a fess 
argent, Jive musical lines, sable, thereon a rose, gules, 
between two escallops of the third ; in chief, a nag's 

head, erased, of the second, between two cross-crosslets, 
or ; in base, a harp of the last. Crest on a wreath a book 

1 The crest of the Scottish family of Bontein of Milldovan is an armillary 
sphere, proper. 


erect gules, clasped and ornamented, or, thereon a silver 
penny, on which is written the Lord's Prayer ; on the 
top of the book a dove proper, in its beak a crow-quill, 
sable. This crest was invented to commemorate an 
achievement performed by one of the family, namely, 
writing the Lord's Prayer within the compass of a silver 
penny with a crow-quill ! Motto PRCEMIUM VIRTUTIS 
HONOR. A fess, five musical lines, a rose, two scallop- 
shells, a nag's head, two cross-crosslets, and a harp 
total, thirteen ! ! Pretty well for the escutcheon. Then 
the crest in charming proportion : A book, a silver 
penny, the Lord's Prayer, a dove, and a crow-quill ! 
Surely no fee could be too exorbitant for such a glorious 
complication of devices ! * Again, in the language of Mr. 
Newton, "if we examine the armorial devices latterly 
appropriated to indicate the achievements of a long series 
of British worthies, whose martial exploits have shed 
peculiar lustre upon our age and nation, we find a new 
species of insignia adopted, of a character totally at 
variance with the art of heraldry, and altogether unknown 
to the science in its palmy days. Instead of those sig- 
nificant symbols and conspicuous figures employed by 
ancient heralds, calculated to strike the beholder at a 
distance, we now see minute landscapes, or marine views, 

1 The 65th volume of the Gentle- ox, man, and eagle (the emblems of 

man's Magazine (1795), contains a the four Evangelists). Crest the 

notice of a most extraordinary armo- ark or mercy-seat, overshadowed by 

rial achievement, which is said to cherubim. Supporters two angels 

have figured on the panels of a from the waist upwards, with hairy 

hackney coach, and which may per- legs and cloven feet, like demons or 

haps have belonged to a "son of satyrs. Motto " Holiness unto the 

Abraham," viz., quarterly, a lion, Lord " (Zech. xiv. 20). 


depicted upon shields, whereon the details are scarcely 
discernible upon the most minute inspection, and which 
it is utterly impossible, by the language of heraldry, to 
describe. 1 To indicate the achievements performed 
during the late war, a practice of the Heralds' College 
has prevailed, not of displaying, as of old, in poetic 
figures, the particular acts of the several heroes, but of 
exhibiting matter-of-fact representations of the scenes of 
action in which they have been engaged. Hence we find, 
mostly in the chief part of the shield, not an emblazoned 
heraldic device, but an extensive landscape depicted after 
nature ; a field of battle covered with killed and wounded ; 
an island taken by assault ; an engagement at sea, with 
ships sinking or blown up ; a fortress stormed, or a castle 
shattered in ruin : and so perfectly unintelligible are 
these exhibitions acknowledged to be by the ingenious 
designers themselves, that we usually have in some part 
of the arms an explanatory scroll, with the word Trafal- 
gar, Acre, Gibraltar, Seringapatam, Algiers, etc., remind- 
ing us of the country sign-post dauber, who, to make his 
artistical efforts understood, accompanies the device with 
a description, as ' The White Horse/ ' The Blue Lion,' 
or 'The Dun Cow.'" 2 

Among the tolerably successful modern perversions 
of Heraldry, the same writer enumerates the armorial 
bearings of Lords Nelson, Exmouth, and Harris, and, it 

1 Instead of ordinary heraldic sym- occurrence, such as a wolf issuing 

bols, many of the escutcheons borne from a cave, a cradle and child under 

by ancient families in Wales exhibit a tree guarded by a goat, and other 

curious pictorial devices commemo- similar combinations, 

rative of some real or legendary 2 Display of Heraldry, p. 408. 



is painful to add, those of Lord Camperdovvn and two 
distinguished Baronets of the Clan Campbell. The 

following augmentation to the paternal ensigns of one of 
the latter, is quite sufficient to call forth the shade of the 
" Gude Schir David Lyndsay :" On a chief argent, a 
mount vert, inscribed " Ava " in letters of gold, thereon 
a Burmese stockade proper, between a representation of 
the gold cross and clasp conferred for distinguished ser- 
vices during the Peninsular war, on the dexter, pendent 
from a ribbon gules, fimbriated argent, and on the sinister, 
pendent from a ribbon azure, the badge of the Portuguese 
Order of the Tower and Sword. The escutcheon of the 
gallant Lord Gough affords a still later example of un- 
chaste and complicated Heraldry, being quarterly, 1st 
and 4th gules, on a mount vert, a lion passant gardant, 
or, supporting with its dexter paw the Union Flag 
proper, and over the same, in chief, the words " China," 
" India," in letters of gold. 2d and 3d azure, on a fess 
argent, between three boars' heads, couped, or, a lion gules 
(being the family arms) ; in the centre chief point, 
pendent from a ribbon, argent, fimbriated azure, a repre- 



sentation of the badge of the Spanish Order of Charles 
in. proper ; and on a chief, a representation of the east 
wall of the fortress of Tarifa, with a breach between two 
turrets, and on the dexter turret, the British flag flying, 
also proper. 

It would be easy to mention many other equally 
improper insignia recently granted by the officers of 
the " College of- Arms," of which we may refer to the 
bearings of Sir John Herschel, which are commemorative, 
not of warlike achievements, but of scientific discoveries. 
Between an appropriate Crest and Motto, the escutcheon 
of that eminent philosopher is thus blazoned : Argent, 
on a mount, vert, a representation of the "forty feet 
reflecting telescope," with its apparatus proper ; a chief, 

azure, thereon the astronomical symbol of " Uranus/' or 
" Georgium Sidus," irradiated, or. Instead of the " forty 
feet reflecting telescope," surely the most ordinary in- 
genuity might have selected something rather more 
heraldic, and, at the same time, equally characteristic, 
from the numerous "celestial figures," which occupy no 
fewer than thirty folio pages in the principal work of the 


worthy Alexander Nisbet. Or, failing an original pro- 
duction, the Arms borne by John de Fontibus, Bishop 
of Ely, in the year 1220, might have been appropriated 
by the Astronomer, viz., Azure, the sun, moon, and stars, 
or, the two first in chief and the last in base ; or those 
granted, as late as 1788, to the family of Thoyts, in Essex 
Azure, on a fess between three mullets of six points, or, 
two characters of the planet Venus, sable. 

Finally, let us refer to the crest and motto of the elo- 
quent Lord Macaulay, of which the former was assuredly 
not very symbolical of the pursuits of a man whose pen 
made his peerage a Blucher boot, with a golden spur, 
planted upon a rock ! The figure afforded a good deal 
of innocent amusement at the time of its assumption, 
when it was suggested, by way of explanation, that one 
of the primitive Macaulay s might perhaps have been a 
Knight of St. Crispin. In that case, however, it was 
urged that the motto was altogether unsuitable, and that 
instead of " Dulce Periculum" which appeared to be 
peculiarly inappropriate for one who had passed through 
life more pleasantly than most men " Ne sutor ultra 
crepidam" would have been much more relevant ! 

'Like the Books of the English College of Arms, the 
later portion of the Lyon Eegister exhibits a good many 
specimens of impure and complicated blazon, which pre- 
sent a strange contrast to the simple Heraldry of an earlier 
age. Probably some of the most objectionable are the 
grants to' military and naval officers, embracing the land- 
scapes and other unsuitable devices already referred to, 
of which a few examples may here be adduced. On an 



embattled chief in the escutcheon devised for a gallant 
colonel of a Highland regiment, in 1815, we find "a 
representation of the town of Aire in France, all proper," 

in allusion to his glorious services on the 2d of March 
1814, which are fully detailed in the Register. The 
year following, a most abundant supply of heraldic in- 
signia is conferred upon another military hero of the Clan 
Campbell. In the first quarter, gyronny of eight for 
Campbell, with a lion rampant on a dexter canton, to 
indicate descent in the female line from Maclauchlan of 
that Ilk. In the second quarter, a lymphad, or galley, 
with her oars in action. In the third, a fess checquy. In 
the fourth, a repetition of the gyrons, with another canton 
charged with two bars, indicative of descent in the female 
line from Sir Ewan Cameron of Locheil. Pendent from 
the centre chief point, by the proper ribbon, a represen- 
tation of the gold cross and clasps presented to the bearer 
for his services during the Peninsular war, and the silver 
medals conferred upon him for his signal intrepidity at 
the memorable battles fought in the Netherlands. The 
shield is surrounded by the Eibbon of the Order of the 
Bath, with the legend, " Tria juncta in uno," in which 
the most casual observer would naturally suggest the 



substitution of Triginta for " Tria," as more strictly 
descriptive of the contents of the escutcheon, besides 
questioning the consistency of the motto which sur- 
mounts the crest, viz., " Nil tibi" ! The grant of arms, 
in the year 1836, to the son of Sir William Fairfax, Flag 
Captain to Admiral Duncan at the battle of Camperdown, 
affords another characteristic example of pictorial Her- 
aldry. Azure, a chevron between two fleurs-de-lis, in 

chief, and a Camperdown medal, in base, or, the medal 
being pendent by a striped ribbon, argent, azure, and 
argent, with the word " Camperdown" underneath ; and 
on a chief a representation of His Majesty's ship " Vene- 
rable" engaging the Dutch Admiral's ship " Vryheid." 

Some of the bearings devised for civilians are equally 
open to criticism. Thus, the escutcheon granted to Mr. 
Maitlarid of Dundrennan, in 1806, exhibits, in its second 
and third quarters, " the ruins of an old abbey on a 
piece of ground, all proper" the patentee being pro- 
prietor of the barony of Dundrennan while the crest 
consists of a demi-monk, holding a crucifix in one hand 
and a rosary in the other. A few years later, in one 
of the quarters of a shield assigned to an Argyllshire 


gentleman, we find "a galley moored in front of Fin- 
gaFs Cave, off the cliff of the Isle of Staffa issuing from 
the dexter side, proper, and in the sea undy, vert, in 
base, a salmon naiant, argent." Again, the bearings con- 

ferred, in 1841, upon Mr. Raeburn of St. Bernard's, son 
of the eminent portrait painter, are thus blazoned : 
Argent, on a piece of ground in base, vert, a roebuck 
statant, proper, drinking out of a burn or brook running 
bendways, azure, and on a canton, ermine, a knight's 
helmet, proper ; " the last being commemorative of the 
honour of knighthood conferred on the patentee's father 
by His Majesty King George iv."! Several other exam- 
ples of what may be termed allusive arms occur about 
the same period. Thus, James Inverarity of Rosemount, 
formerly of the H.E.I.C. Medical Service, carries gules, 
on a chevron, or, between six arrows in chief, three and 
three, the points upward, two saltirewise and one in pale, 
plumed and banded, argent, and in base a hunting-horn 
stringed, of the third, an elephant's head couped, sable. 
Crest A rosebush, proper. Motto Semper floreat. The 
arrows are intended to symbolize the latter part of the 
bearer's surname (!), while the hunting-horn refers to his 




maternal descent his mother being a Duncan ; the ele- 
phant's head to his connexion with India, and the crest 
to his place of abode. In more than one instance, the 

triumphs of Commerce are elaborately displayed, as in 
the escutcheon of Michael M'Chlery, a London merchant 
of Scottish extraction, " connected by trade and actively 
engaged in traffic with various colonies in the West 
Indies and other countries :"- Azure, on a chevron, 
argent, between a ship in full sail, or, placed betwixt a 
cross-crosslet, fitched, and a palm-tree eradicated fessways 
in chief, of the second, and in base the figure of Com- 
merce, of the third, three roses, gules. Crest A thistle, 
proper. Motto Labore et Honore. Commerce is here 
associated with Religion (cross-cr.osslet) and Peace (palm- 
tree), while the roses bear reference to the English resi- 
dence of the patentee, and the crest to the land of his 
fathers. Again, in the shield of a Glasgow sugar-refiner 
and ship-owner, maternally descended from the Camp- 
bells of Craignish, we find a most imposing array 
of miscellaneous charges, surrounded by a bordure 
" gyronny of eight." A fess, a lion rampant, a garb, a 
ship in full sail " on the sea," a thistle, and a stalk of 



sugar-cane the last-mentioned figure being in allusion 
to the professional pursuits of the bearer. 

On the other hand, however, the Register supplies 
numerous illustrations of appropriate and tasteful bla- 
zonry, of which the following Coats, all granted during 
the last fifteen years, may be given as examples : 

Sir Frederick Pollock, Lord Chief Baron of Her Ma- 
jesty's Court of Exchequer in England, son of the late Mr. 
David Pollock of Kelso, in the County of Roxburgh : 
Azure, three fleur-de-lis within a bordure engrailed, or, 
and as an honourable augmentation commemorative of 
his Lordship's official rank, in the dexter chief point, on 
a canton, ermine, a portcullis of the second. 

James Lorimer of Kellyfield (father of the present 
Lyon-Clerk) Parted per chevron gules and or, two spurs 
pale ways, rowels downwards, buckled and strapped, in 
chief, of the second, and in base a horse courant at 
liberty, sable the charges being relative to the name. 1 

1 Mr. Lorimer's crest consists, of escutcheon the two inottos bearing 

two eagles' wings surmounted by a appropriate reference to the spiritual 

cross-crosslet with the motto " Up- and mundane elements symbolized 

ward," while the word "Onward" by the crest and the shield respec- 

fornis a second motto, under the tively. 


James Henry Lawrence-Archer, Esquire, Captain in 
the Army : Parted per fess azure and argent, in chief, 
three broad arrows in pale with the points downwards, 
or, and in base a cross raguly, gules, charged in the 
centre with a saltire, of the third. l 

Sir George Brown, Knight Grand Cross of the Bath, 
General and Commander in Chief of Her Majesty's 
forces in Ireland, etc. Gules, on a chevron betwixt 
three fleur-de-lis, or, a mural crown of the first, all 
within a bordure embattled, of the second. 

The " composition " of a coat-armorial has sometimes 
been pretty successfully accomplished without the aid 
or intervention of the duly constituted authorities. An 
interesting illustration of this occurs in the correspon- 
dence of Robert Burns, who thus expresses himself in 
a letter to Mr. Cunningham, in the year 1793: "I 
lately lost a valuable seal, a present from a departed 
friend, which vexes me much. I have gotten one of 
your Highland pebbles, which I fancy would make a 
very decent one, and I want to cut my armorial bearing 
on it : will you be so obliging as inquire what will be 
the expense of such a business ? I do not know that my 
name is matriculated, as the Heralds call it, at all, but 
I have invented arms for myself ; so, you know, I shall 
be chief of the name, and, by courtesy of Scotland, will 
likewise be entitled to supporters. These, however, I 
do not intend having on my seal. I am a bit of a 
herald, and shall give you, secundum artem, my arms. 
On a field, azure, a holly bush seeded, proper, in base ; 

1 See Plate iii. fig. 2. 



a shepherd's pipe and crook, saltirewise, also proper, in 
chief. On a wreath of the colours, a woodlark perching 
on a sprig of bay-tree, proper, for crest. Two mottoes : 
round the top of the crest, 'Wood-notes wild ;' at the 
bottom of the shield, in the usual place, * Better a wee 

bush than nae bield." n It is somewhat remarkable 
that these very bearings ultimately found their way 
into the Lyon-Register, being embraced in the grant of 
arms to Dr. James Burnes (the eldest brother of the 
lamented Sir Alexander Burnes, and a kinsman of the 
poet), in the year 1837, and again in an amended 
matriculation, in 1851, to the following effect : Ermine, 
on a bend azure, an escutcheon, or, charged with a holly 
bush, surmounted by a crook and bugle-horn, saltire- 
ways, all proper, being the well-known device used by 

1 Mr. Chambers informs us that a 
seal with these fanciful bearings was 
actually cut for the poet, and used 
by him during the remainder of his 

life. It is represented under the 
profile of its owner in Mr. Cunning- 
ham's Edition of Burns, viii. 188 
(Life and Works of Burns, iii. 287). 


the poet Burns ; and on a chief, gules, the white horse of 
Efanover, in allusion to the Civil Hanoverian Guelphic 
Order conferred on the bearer by William iv.,.and to the 
distinguished services of himself and his brothers in India. 
The works of the great English dramatist abound 
with allusions to the " Noble Science," indicative of 
a thorough knowledge of the subject. Every one, for 
example, must remember the amusing dialogue between 
Shallow and Slender, at the commencement of the 
"Merry Wives/' regarding the family status of the 
former, whose successors " gone before him," as well as 
his ancestors " that come after him/' were unquestion- 
ably entitled to the designation of armiger, besides 
charging their " old coat " with a " dozen white luces." 
An interesting parallel has been drawn between Shake- 
speare and Scott, with reference to their respective 
endeavours to found a family, both having had a 
motive for the idea in the gentle blood which flowed in 
their veins. In the year 1596, "when Shakespeare was 
getting his head above water in London, his father is 
found applying to the Heralds' College for a coat of 
arms on the basis of family service to King Henry vn., 
of official dignity, of the possession of property, and 
the fact of having married a daughter of Arden of 
Wilmcote ; an application which was extended, three 
years later, to one for the privilege of impaling the 
Shakespeare arms with those of Arden. There can, of 
course, be no doubt that William the poet prompted 
these ambitious applications, and designed them for the 
benefit of himself and his descendants. They take their 



place, with the investments at Stratford, as part of the 
ultimate plan of life which the great poet had in view." 1 
The Laureate of our own day furnishes numerous 
examples of his familiarity with the science of Heraldry, 
and on at least one occasion he exercises his imagina- 
tive powers in the production of a piece of blazonry. 
In one of his charming " Idylls of the King," the wizard 
Merlin thus addresses the " wily Vivian :" 

" I once was looking for a magic weed, 
And found a fair young squire who sat alone, 
Had carved himself a knightly shield of wood, 
And then was painting on it fancied arms, 
Azure, an eagle rising or, the sun 
In dexter chief ; the scroll ' I follow fame.' 
And speaking not, but leaning over him, 
I took his brush and blotted out the bird, 
And made a gardener putting in a grali^ 
With this for motto, ' Rather use than fame.'" 

Unfortunately, however, the originality of the young 
squire's " fancied arms " is altogether open to question, 

1 Book of Days. 



consisting as they do of nothing more nor less than the 
crest borne by the ancient Scottish family of Spottis- 
woode of that Ilk, in the county of Berwick ! 

How immeasurably superior to the inharmonious 
combinations of modern Heraldry are the plain but 
beautiful escutcheons of the days of yore, one of 
which is thus referred to in the well-known lines of 
Spenser : 

" And on his brest a bloodie crosse he bore, 

The deare remembrance of his dying Lord, 
For whose sweete sake that glorious badge he wore, 
And dead, as living ever, him adored : 
Upon his shield the like was also scored." 1 

Apart altogether from historical association, it is a 
positive relief to turn from the distasteful " signboards" 
of the nineteenth century to such examples as the follow- 
ing : The stags' heads of Cavendish, the fusils of Percy, 
the chief and lion .rampant of Russell, the bends of 
Stanley and Curzon, the fret of Harrington, and the 
plain quartered shield and silver mullet of De Vere. In 
our own comer of the empire, it is no less pleasing to 

call to remembrance the chequered fess of the Stewarts 
and Lindsays, the crowned heart and mullets of the 

1 Faerie Queen, B. i. c. 1. st. 2. 



Douglases, 1 the inescutcheons of the Hays, the cinque- 
foils of the Hamiltons, the saltire and chief of the Bruces, 
the crescents of the Setons, the fleurs-de-lis of the Mont- 

gomeries, the garbs of the Cumins, the pale of the 
Erskines, the engrailed cross of the Sinclairs, and the 
boars' heads of the Gordons. Although vast changes 

have undoubtedly occurred in the habits and occupations 
of our countrymen since those distant days which wit- 
nessed the purest and the proudest age of blazon, the 
noble science of Heraldry still affords ample materials, in 
its endless devices and combinations, not only for the 
distinction of different families and their cadets, but also 

1 " The blodye harte in the Dowglas armes 

Hys standere stode on hye, 
That every man myght full well knowe : 
Byside stode starres three." 

The Battle of Otterbourne (a poem written about 
the time of Henry vi. 1422-61). 


for the emblematical representation of almost every 
achievement of modern times. The mere circumstance 
of its original connexion with the field of battle is no 
reason why its symbols should be confined to the war- 
rior's escutcheon, as its figurative language is adapted to 
commemorate the boundless benevolence of a Howard 
in the eighteenth century, as well as the heroism which 
distinguished the same illustrious name on the bloody 
plains of Flodden. 

While we cannot but sympathize in the regret ex- 
pressed by a writer already quoted, " that the successors 
of our ancient heralds should so far have forgotten the 
honour of their calling, as to throw ridicule upon the 
science they were^ bound to cherish ; to heap contempt 
upon a system inexhaustibly rich in poetic illustration ; 
and to be the destroyers of that which neither the change 
of manners nor the feelings of the age has had the power 
to eradicate ;" let us, nevertheless, venture to hope that, 
along with a most gratifying return to a purer and better 
taste on the part of the professors of Architecture, we 
may also witness a revival of those simple rules and 
principles which regulated, in an earlier age, the blazon 
of Armorial Ensigns. 


With the exception of the power of levying certain 
penalties for the unlawful use of armorial ensigns, the 
Lord Lyon does not possess a right to any fees or casu- 
alties under the legislative enactment of 1592. By the 



Statute 1662, c. 53, the Lords of the Privy-Council 
were authorized to modify fees to the Lyon Office, where 
the same were not modified already ; but that provision 
was probably never carried into execution, because the 
Act, as previously stated, was repealed in 1663. The 
Statute of 1672, however, besides re-enacting the pecu- 
niary penalties of 1592, fixes the following fees for the 

matriculation of armorial bearings 

Prelates and Noblemen, 
Knights and Barons, 
All other Persons, . 

20 Merks = 1 2 

10 = 11 

5 =05 



The Appendix to the Commissioners' Keport of 1822 
contains the following " Table of Fees" for the matri- 
culation of arms in the Lyon Office, dated April 1760 ; 
but the authority on which it rests, or the period when 
it was first established, does not appear to have been 
ascertained : 

Lord Lyon. 




Seal and 



Duke, .... 

S. D. 
16 5 

& 8. D. 

8. D. 

8. D. 
1 1 

S. D. 
10 6 

S. D. 

S. D. 

36 4 6 

Marquis, . . . 
Earl, . 

24 3 

3 13 6 

2 12 6 


10 6 

1 1 

33 1 6 

Viscount, . . . 



2 2 


10 6 

1 1 

25 16 6 

Knight and Gen- ) 
tleman, ... 


13 4 



-2 (i 

10 6 

5 18 

Do., with support- -j 
ers, discretion- ,- 
ary, never below > 


2 12 (5 


1 1 



28 1 6 

It is added, that " when a gentleman's or knight's arms 
are recorded in the Kegister as the first of the name, or 
have a compartment, double fees are charged." 


So far as noblemen are concerned, the above rates 
have had no precise application to the Lyon Office since 
the union of the Kingdoms ; but the fees for matricu- 
lating the arms of a " knight or gentleman" continued 
to be the rates charged as late as 1804. From that 
date, however, these fees were gradually augmented till 
they reached their maximum about the year 1814. Their 
progressive increase will appear from the following ex- 
amples : 

1805. Average of Two Patents, ... 16 9 

1806. Four Patents, . . . 16 19 7 
1808. A Single Patent charged, ... 20 9 6 
1811. . . '. 31 10 
1811-14. . . from 31 10 to 42. 
1814-22. . .': . . 52 10 

Between 1805 and 1814, the fees for a grant of arms, 
with supporters, were, in like manner, variously and 
arbitrarily charged. In 1808, for example, the sum 
paid for a Baronet's patent amounted to no less than a 
hundred guineas, of which the Lord Lyon's propor- 
tion was 52, 10s, Subsequently to the year 1814, an 
extraordinary distinction appears to have been made 
with respect to supporters : " Where the party was con- 
sidered to have a full right to them by the Heraldic law 
of Scotland," the fees charged amounted to 84 ; but 
" where the Lord Lyon's concession of supporters was 
more of the nature of -a favour or discretionary grant," 
the sum of 115, 10s. was exacted. Besides other par- 
ticulars, the allotment of these maximum fees to the 
different officers is set forth in the following table : 




Lower Rate. 

Higher Rate. 

Lord. Lyon, 

10 10 

31 10 

52 10 

Lyon -Depute, 


10 10 

10 10 



10 10 

10 10 

Do., for extra trouble, 
Books and Records, 
Herald Painter, 



10 10 
6 60 

Seal, Wax, and Livery, 
Tin Box, 

1 1 


4 10 6 


10 10 

10 10 

10 3 6 

TOTAL, . . . 

52 10 


115 10 

Besides one guinea for a " tin box," and ten guineas 
for a " stamp," we have here a fee to the Lyon Clerk 
" for extra trouble/' and another for the " books and 
records" (amounting, in the case of an ordinary grant 
of arms, to 6, 6s. and 4, 4s. respectively), neither of 
which is contained in the table of 1760 ; but without 
taking these four additional items into consideration, 
the other rates charged subsequently to 1814 were more 
than five times the amount of those paid prior to the 
year 1804. 

" Of the great addition which has thus been made to 
the fees for matriculations, since the year 1804," to use 
the language of the Report already referred to, " it is 
enough to say, that they have taken place without 
warrant, and solely at the discretion of the officers them- 
selves who were interested in the exaction ; that the 
great impropriety of the practice thus introduced, is 
acknowledged in the returns and examinations of the 


present officers, and that the usage, if it can be so called, 
thus recently commenced, cannot of itself .afford any 
legal or valid ground for the continuance of the arbitrary 
charges thus made. ... If it were necessary to give 
any further reason against the practice, besides the want 
of due authority, it is obvious that many irregularities 
naturally result from it, in addition to the exaction of 
fees higher than the legal rates. For, by the evidence of 
the accounts found in the Office, it is proved that grants 
of certain armorial distinctions, particularly that of wear- 
ing supporters, have been made, where the party apply- 
ing had avowedly no right thereto, by heraldic law or 
custom, but received it as a concession on payment of a 
higher rate of fee that is to say, of a corresponding- 
price. In so far, therefore, as it is of any importance 
that the rules established by law, or the custom of the 
Heraldic Colleges in the grant of arms should continue 
to be observed, till altered or superseded by competent 
authority, the conduct of the officers in question was 
without excuse, having held out a principle of distinc- 
tion which set these rules altogether aside, or rendered 
it their own immediate interest to disregard and violate 
them." 1 

Since the year 1822, however, a considerable reduction 
has been effected in the fees of the Lyon Office, and the 
extraordinary distinction relative to supporters is no 
longer observed. The present charge for an ordinary 
Patent of Arms is usually about 42, while for a Grant 
with supporters, the fees amount to sixty guineas. In 

1 Report on the Office and Court of the Lord Lyon (1822), pp. 18, 19. 



the case of a Matriculation, the charge is about 14, and 
with supporters, 20. As a general rule, supporters are 
only granted to those persons who are believed to be 
strictly entitled to them by the heraldic practice of Scot- 
land ; but the Lord Lyon also considers himself war- 
ranted in assigning them in certain special cases, of which 
an interesting example may be given in the grant of 
armorial ensigns to Mr. Lockhart Scott, the grandson 
and representative of the author of Waverley. The 
apportionment and details of the fees at present payable 
for grants and matriculations are set forth in the follow- 
ing tabular statement : 











Lord Lyon, . . . 








1 11 6 


Lyon -Clerk, . . 



1 11 6 


Herald Painter, . . 





Stamp, . 

10 2 6 

10 2 6 



Seal with Liveries, . 

1 1 

1 1 

Fees of Office on pre- 


senting Petition, ex- 

peding Patent, en- 

N 9 16 6 

10 12 6 

5 14 5 


grossing the Record, 

and other trouble, 1 


42 63 

14 5 


The earliest official notice on the subject of fees for 

in the following notan- 

recording Genealogies occurs 

1 Including, in the case of Matri- 
culations, 1, 14s. 6d. for Certificate 
and Vellum, and 10s. 6d. for Extract. 

In the case of Grants, the stamp 
is payable under the provisions of the 
Act 55 Geo. in. c. 184. 


dum appended to the "Table of Fees," dated 1*760, 
already referred to : " Birth -Brieves, Genealogies, Trees 
and Descents of Families, discretionary." The details of 
the fees paid at the registration of eight Birth-Brieves 
and Genealogies, between 17 70 and 1775, and of four 
others, between 1796 and 1819, will be found in the 
Appendix to the Report of the Commissioners on the 
Office and Court of the Lord Lyon, in 1822. The 
lowest charge is 10, 18s., and the highest 52, 10s., 
giving an average of nearly 25. No record appears to 
have been kept of the fees paid for the registration of 
pedigrees between 1775 and 1796. According to the 
evidence furnished to the Commissioners, in 1821, by 
Mr. David Clyne, Interim Lyon-Clerk, " the fees for 
recording genealogies were about forty guineas at and 
subsequent to 1814, but, in general, these fees were 
proportioned to the extent of the trouble and investi- 
gation in each case ; and he has known as much as 
sixty, seventy, or one hundred guineas, paid as the fees 
of a genealogy." 1 

At the date of the Commissioners' Report, the fee 
charged for an extract or certificate from the Register of 
Arms was 10s. 6d., besides the stamp. For a painted 
sketch of arms, including the use of the Register or 
search, the fee amounted to 1, Is., besides the charge 
of the herald painter. For a search, in ordinary cases, 
the charge was 5s. ; and in extraordinary searches, 
where there was more than usual trouble, the fee was 
" charged according to time, at the rate of payment to 

1 Report on tlie Office and Court of the Lord Lyon, Appendix No. TV. 



law agents in such cases, besides the use of the Regis- 
ters." 1 The present charge for an extract is at the rate 
of 10s. 6d., exclusive of the stamp, for the first ordinary 
legal sheet (of two pages), and 3s. for every other sheet ; 
while the fee for a particular search is 5s., and for a 
general search 1, Is., access being given, in the latter 
case, to all the Records. 

In terms of a, grant by George II. under the Great 
Seal, in 1731, the Lord Lyon, Heralds, and Pursuivants 
receive certain fees on the creation of British Peers 
and Knights, as a compensation for the loss of the fees 
payable, before the Union, at the creation of Scottish 
Nobility, Knights Baronets and Bachelors. The amount 
of these fees will appear from the following Table : 

Lord Lyon. 

Each Herald. 

Each Pursuivant. 

Prince of Wales, 

53 6 8 


3 11 1| 

Duke or Duchess, 

26 13 4 

2 13 4 

1 15 64 

Marquis or Marchioness, 




Earl or Countess, 

13 6 8 


17 9| 

Viscount or Viscountess, 



13 4 

Baron or Baroness, . 



10 8 

Knight of the Thistle, . 





2 10 


8 I 2 

Bath, . . 



8 0) 

Knight Baronet, 

2 10 

13 4 

8 10 

Simple Knight, . 

2 10 



1 Report on the Office and Court of 
the Lord Lyon, Appendix, No. TV., 
p. 25. 

2 The fees pertaining to Knights 
of the Thistle, Garter, and Bath are 

not embraced in the royal grant, nor 
was it shown to the Commissioners 
" by what express sanction they were 
established." Report on the Li/on 
Court (1822), p. 31. 


The total receipts of the Lord Lyon, on the crea- 
tion of British Peers and Baronets, during the three 
years ending 5th April 1800, appear to have been 
427, 10s. 3d., being an average of about 142; while 
his receipts from the same source, during the three 
years prior to 1821, amounted to only 157, 4s. 9cl., or 
an average of 52, 8s. 3d. The average annual receipts 
of each of the Heralds from fees, during the four 
years ending 1820, amounted to 18, 6s. 8d., while the 
gross receipts of the Pursuivants, on the average of 
the fifteen years ending October 1821, amounted to 
16, 11s. 2d., not deducting Exchequer fees and 
stamps. When there is a vacancy among these officers, 
the relative fees are divided equally among the rest 
during the period of the vacancy, which sometimes 
continues for a considerable time. Again, the total fees 
received by the Lord Lyon, Heralds, and Pursuivants, 
collectively, on the occasion of the creation of British 
Peers and Knights, during the ten years ending 5th 
April 1855, amounted to 1155, 5s. 2d., giving an 
annual average of 115, 10s. 5d. 

The Lord Lyon receives various fees on the admission 
of Messengers-at-Arms, besides certain payments from 
the Heralds and Pursuivants "as a consideration " for 
their appointments. The sum paid by a Herald is 
believed to be about 315, and by a Pursuivant about 
210.* It also appears to have formerly been the 
custom for the Lyon-Clerk to pay a douceur to the 
Lord Lyon for his appointment ; and on one occasion 

1 Report on the Office and Court of the Lord Lyon, p. 22. 


the sum of 360 was paid by that official to the pre- 
decessor of the present Lord Lyon. 1 Among other 
suggestions relative to the regulation of the Lyon 
Court, the Commissioners recommend " that provision 
should be made for preventing the sale of any office 
to be held hereafter, in that as in other Courts." 2 

By authority of a warrant under the Privy Seal of 
Scotland, dated 25th July 1796, the Lord Lyon receives 
a salary of 600 per annum, payable on the civil 
establishment for Scotland, and subject to the usual 
deduction of one shilling and sixpence, in the pound. 
The said warrant was issued on the appointment of the 
late Earl of Kinnoull to the office of Lord Lyon, with 
survivorship to liis son, the present Earl, then Lord 
Dupplin. Before the year 1796, the salary of the Lord 
Lyon was only 300 ; and the increase is thus accounted 
for in a return made to the House of Commons from the 
Lyon Office in 1798 : " The reason of this augmentation 
seems to have been that the office was formerly held by 
commoners, and was then conferred upon a nobleman of 
the first rank, and the salary had not been augmented 
since the Union. On the other hand, by the discharge 
of funeral solemnities in Scotland, and by the abolition 
of Episcopacy in that kingdom, the large fees from thence 

1 Report on the Office anil Court of the practice of selling any office in a 
the Lord L you, p. 23. Court of Justice, particularly where 

2 Ibid. p. 43. At an earlier part the officer by whom the purchase is 
of the same Report (p. 24), the Com- made has a right to receive fees from 
missioners make the following state- the suitors, is irregular and inexpe- 
inent : " We have had more than dieiit. The grounds of this opinion 
one occasion, in the course of our are too obvious to call for repeti- 
Reports, to express our opinion, that tion." 


arising to the Lyon Office were totally annihilated ; and 
by a new grant of fees, made by his late Majesty King 
George n., in 1731, to Lord Lyon and his brethren the 
Heralds, in order to compensate to them the loss of fees 
upon the creation of Scotch Nobility, Knights Baronets 
and Bachelors, sustained in consequence of the Treaty 
of Union, which precluded all such creations thereafter, 
the fees so established by King George n. were one full 
third less than those which had been paid upon similar 
creations before the Union." 

We learn from the 1 6th chapter of the MS. " Account 
of the office of Heraulds," already referred to, that " since 
the raign of King Malcolme iv., the King of Arrnes and 
his under-officers hes had the upermost habit for their 
fee of all Princes, Dukes, Marquesses, Earls, Lords, and 
Knights, of every Archbishope and BLshope (before the 
reformatione of religione), the lyk or the utter value of 
them, with what further thair owne noble dispositions 
moved them to of free gift, forby what was their dew. 
Ancientlie, at funerals and interments of noble person- 
ages, they had the cloaths and caprones (chaperons ?) of 
mourning litters and black hangings, with a compleit 
suitt of mourning. They had also at marriages and 
weddings of Kings, Queins, Duiks; and Princes (the 
king's children), the clothes of the same prince, which 
he wore that day of their marriage, with . a largess in 
money alsoe. Lykwais, at the christning of the king's 
children and princes, apperteined to them the usuall salt 
siller, bason and evar, with all the mantells, swathling- 
bands of the best, the warming-pan, the cloth of estaitt 


and pillowes for the chyld's baptising ; and after the christ- 
ning they hade right to three several largess in money." 1 

Neither the Lyon-Depute nor the Lyon-Clerk receive 
any salary from the public, their emoluments consisting 
entirely of fees. At one time, however, the Lyon-Depute 
appears to have received the sum of 50 yearly from the 
Lord Lyon. 2 Besides the fees payable at the matricula- 
tion of arms, the Lyon-Clerk receives various payments 
in connexion with the admission and control of Messen- 
gers-at-arms. The salaries of the Heralds amount to 25 
each, and of the Pursuivants to 16, 13s. 4d. 

The total annual average of fees received by the Lord 
Lyon, during the three years prior to 1820, appears to 
have been as follows : 

From Matriculations of Arms, . . . . 346 15 10 

Recording Genealogies, ..... 330 

[This is stated to be the average of seven years.] 

Admission of Messengers, . . . . 218170 

Annual payments by do., . . . . 7360 

Creations of Peers and Knights in London, . 5283 

[The average of the years 1 81 8, 1 8 1 9, 1 820.] 

Annual amount of fees, 3 . . ,694 10 1 

The fees received by the Lyon-Depute at the matricu- 
lation of arms, taken on an average of the three years 

1 Adv. Lib. 34. 3. 22. The same belonging to the Scotts King of 

chapter contains an account of the Armes, and to his under-officers, 

" Fees antientlie belonging to the Heraulds and Pursevants, in generall 

Scotts Kings of Armes, Heraulds, and and particular," the substance of 

Pursevants," embracing some curious which is given by Nisbet in the 

details respecting the lands and second volume of his System of Her- 

pecuniary allowances gran ted to them aldry, part iv. p. 167. 

by Malcolm n., Alexander in., Ro- 2 Report on the Office and Court 

berfc I., and subsequent monarchs. of the Lord Lyon, p. 23. 

Chap. xvii. relates to the " Fees now 3 Ibid. p. 22. 



prior to 1820, amounted to 88, 18s. yearly, while the 
total fees received by him on an average of five years 
preceding 1819, appear to have amounted to 145. 
The total fees received by the Lyon-Olerk at the same 
period, seem to have been at the rate of about 420 per 
annum, rather less than the half of that sum having been 
derived from the matriculation of arras, extracts, and 
searches. At the date of the Commissioners' Report, the 
average annual emoluments of the Herald Painter, ex- 
clusive of sketches, amounted to about 14 per annum.. 
His allowance, at that time, for an uncoloured sketch was 
2s. 6d., while he received 10s. 6d. for a coloured sketch 
without, and l, Is. for the same with supporters. 

The total receipts of the various officers from all 
sources, during the years ending 5th January 1827, 
1828, 1831, and 1832, will appear from the following 
Abstract of a Return furnished to the King's Remem- 
] irancer of Exchequer : 



1827. ' 1828. 



s. d. 

s. d. 

s. d. 

s. d. 

s. d. 

Lord Lyon, 

1076 5 10 1694 16 6 

795 17 10 870 8 6 

noy 7 2 

Lyon- Depute, 

49 6 6 41 12 

37 8 

50 5 

44 12 10 

Lyon-Clerk i . 

504 17 3 555 3 10 

537 1 2 

591 12 7 

547 3 8 

Herald Painter 

32 12 6 18 11 

22 18 29 18 6 


Heralds and ) 

Pursuivants ) 

196 12 9 

505 17 9 

127 16 781 4 4 

402 17 8 


1859 14 10 

2816 1 1 

1521 1 

2323 8 11 

2130 1 4 

1 The receipts of the Lyon-Clerk 
are subject to a large deduction for 
stamp-duties, salary to Lyon-Clerk 
Depute, office rent, stationery, etc. 

It would appear, moreover, that the 

sums here stated as the receipts of the 
Lyon-Clerk embrace the fees payable 
to the Lyon-Depute and the Herald 
Painter, which are thus twice taken 
into account. 


Of late years, the average total annual receipts of 
the different officials are understood to have been about 
the following : 

Lord Lyon, . . . . 1180 

Lyon-Depute, . . . . . 70 
Lyon-Clerk, . 400 1 

Herald Painter, .... 30 

Heralds and Pursuivants, . . . 450 

In the " Proposal for the further regulation of the Lyon 
Court," at the end of the Report to which we have so 
frequently referred, the Commissioners take exception 
to the exercise of discretionary powers in granting and 
matriculating arms, and the consequent abuses with re- 
spect to the nature and amount of fees. They recom- 
mend that, instead of being paid by fluctuating fees, 
the several officers should receive a fixed annual amount 
payable on the civil list, in accordance with the follow- 
ing scale : 

Lord Lyon, 1000 

Lyon-Depute, ..... 300 
Lyon-Clerk, . . . . . 400 

To meet these salaries, they further suggest that a new 
regulation of the fees should take place, calculated to 
produce not less than 1800 per annum, so as to leave 
a surplus fund of 100 for defraying the expenses of 
prosecutions carried on by the Procurator-Fiscal ; and 
that the whole of these fees should be made payable to 
Exchequer. The Commissioners acknowledge that such 
an arrangement would imply an increase of the rates 

1 These receipts are subject to the exception of the fees paid to 
all the deductions specified in the the Lyon-Depute and the Herald 
note 011 the preceding page, with Painter. 


established prior to the year 1804; "but this," they 
add, " does not appear to us a sufficient objection, taking- 
place, as it does, in matters with respect to which it is : 
not an object, from considerations connected with the 
persons by whom they are paid, or the nature of the 
business for which they are chargeable, that they should 
be restricted to their present amount." It is hardly 
necessary to state, that this suggestion has not been 
carried into execution, and it is very doubtful whether 
it was ever seriously entertained. For some time past, 
there has been a decided tendency to substitute salaries 
for fees in the payment of public functionaries ; but in 
certain instances, the latter mode of remuneration is, 
upon the whole, the most expedient, and in the case of 
the Lyon Office, we incline to think that such an altera- 
tion would not be desirable. 

There are various allusions to the subject of fees in 
the report of the case of the procurator-fiscal of the 
Lyon Office v. Murray of Touchadam. 1 The interlocutor 
of Lord Hailes (13th February 1776), which "upon the 
whole assoilzies" the defender, expressly reserves " to 
the procurator-fiscal to charge the said William Murray 
to matriculate his armorial bearings in the Register of 
the Lyon Court, in terms of the Statute 1672, and to 
pay the fees exigible from a baron, and no more, as the 
Statute bears ;" and also reserves " to the officers of 
court to exact whatever farther sum may be judged 
reasonable, in case the said William Murray shall incline 
to be furnished, not only with a blazoning, in terms of 

1 Br. Supp. v. 490, and Morison's Diet. 7656 


the Act, but also with a painting in water-colours and 
other ornaments, these being things which the Lord 
Lyon is not bound by law to provide without a suitable 
remuneration." On advising a reclaiming petition and 
answers, the Lords adhered to the interlocutor of the 
Ordinary, and refused the petition, except as to the fees 
exigible on matriculations ; as to which, they remitted to 
the Ordinary to hear parties further, and to do as he 
should see cause. In reasoning, the Lords made a dis- 
tinction betwixt a right to wear arms and a matriculation. 
In the Jtrst, immemorial possession would presume a 
grant even from the sovereign himself to wear them ; 
and many families in Scotland had right to arms before 
the Act 1592 ; so did not derive right to wear them 
from the Lyon in virtue of that Act of Parliament. But 
as to matriculation, in consequence of the Act 1672, 
that was requisite in every case, and is so found by the 
Ordinary in this case. The fees, no doubt, are fixed by 
the Act 1672, but the Lord President (Dundas) thought 
that, as in other regulations of fees about that period, 
practice and change of times had produced an alteration, 
so this might be the case here, and therefore he proposed 
to remit that point to the Ordinary to hear further, which 
was agreed to. It was alleged by the pursuer that sub- 
sequent usage had derogated from the Statute of 1672, 
and had established higher fees, in support of which 
eleven instances were condescended on, in which higher 
rates had been paid within the twenty years preceding. 
On the other hand, it was answered by the laird of 
Touchadam, that the Statute only regulates the fees 


where the right to the arms to be matriculated is prior 
to 1672, as in the present case ; and that the instances 
adduced by the pursuer, being new grants obtained from 
the Lyon, cannot establish a contrary usage, and are, 
moreover, too few and too recent to determine the legal 
fees in any case. On the report of Lord Hailes, 24th 
June 1778, the Court found, in accordance with the 
pleading for the defender, that the Lyon can exact no 
higher fees for Mr. Murray of Touchadam's arms than 
ten merks, being the fees exigible, by the Statute 1672, 
from a baron. But while the Lyon was found liable for 
the other expenses of the litigation, " they thought the 
plea, so far as concerned the matriculation fees, not im- 
proper, as the Statute was so ancient, and the practice 
for at least twenty years against it, although not uniform/' 
It would appear, therefore, that an important distinc 
tion may be legally made in the rates charged for the 

j O / o 

matriculation of armorial bearings. In the case of the 
representatives of families entitled to use heraldic ensigns 
before the yenr 1672, these rates, are nearly nominal, 
although, no doubt, a reasonable extra charge may be 
made, should an "illumination" of the arms be also 
furnished to the party matriculating. But, on the other 
hand; in the case of persons applying for new grants of 
arms, it is not very easy to determine what fees may be 
properly demanded by the authorities of the Lyon Office, 
who, besides other specialities, may naturally plead " use 
and wont" in justification of their higher charges. Even 
in the Touchadam case, the Lord President considered 
that " practice and change of times" might have pro- 


cluced some alteration in the fees of the Lyon Office, and 
although that opinion did not eventually affect the 
judgment of the Court on the general question before 
them, in awarding expenses they made a special exemp- 
tion, in the pursuer's favour, of the plea respecting the 
charge for matriculation. 

It is certainly very desirable that the fees of the Lyon 
Office should be distinctly and authoritatively settled, 
and there can be no doubt that the abuses which are 
universally admitted to have been practised at different 
periods by our heraldic officials, have proved a very 
serious obstacle to the more general matriculation of 
armorial bearings. Without going so far as to maintain, 
on the strength of the Touchadam decision, that, in the 
middle of the nineteenth century, the representatives of 
ancient families entitled to use heraldic ensigns prior to 
1672, may insist on having their armorial bearings duly 
entered in the Lyon Register, on the payment of five or 
ten Scottish merks, it appears to be perfectly fair and 
proper that some substantial distinction should be made 
in their favour. Such persons may unquestionably 
allege, as indicated by the Lord Ordinary's interlocutor 
in the case of Touchadam, that the ensigns which they 
have inherited with their names were, in all probability, 
at one time regularly recorded ; and, moreover, that so 
soon as the procurator-fiscal of the Lyon Office thinks 
proper to prosecute, they are quite ready to matriculate, 
in terms of the Statute of Charles II. But even in their 
case, the usage of a long series of years might, without 
much hardship, be urged in justification of an increase of 


fees, and probably would not now be objected to by the 
parties themselves. On the other hand, in the case of 
grants of new arms, a comparatively larger scale of fees 
might with great propriety be adopted ; and in both 
cases the rate of payment by cadets, at matriculation, 
ought to be proportionally modified. 

The fees at present charged in the Lyon Office are 
very much below those of the English College of Arms. 
An Order was issued by the Earl Marshal of England 
in the beginning of the sixteenth century, about twenty- 
five years after the institution of the College of Arms, in 
terms of which the expense of acquiring heraldic distinc- 
tions was regulated by the degree of the persons on whom 
they were conferred, in accordance with the following 
scale : 

Bishops, Abbots, and Priors of great possessions. . 10 

Abbots and Priors of " mean " possessions, .. . 6 13 4 

Churchmen with benefices of 100 markes yearly, . 600 
Incorporated Crafts, . . . . . .1000 

Temporal men with land or fees of 100 markes yearly, 613 6 

Do. do. under 100 markes yearly, 6 

Persons with 1000 markes in moveable goods, . 600 

Persons with 1000 markes in land and goods, . . 500 

As in Scotland, the Officers of the English College of 
Arms " have certain stipends and fees on the creation 
of Peers, Baronets, and Knights, but their principal 
income is derived from fees for professional advice and 
assistance in tracing pedigrees ; for the registration of 
nominal and armorial additions and distinctions ; and 
for grants of coat armour. At present, the total fees 


and expenses (including 10 of stamp duty) payable 
for an ordinary grant of arms, at the English College 
of Heralds, amount to 76, 10s. Supporters are granted 
in separate patents, the charge being 35 in the case 
of newly-created Peers, and 55 in the case of Knights 
Grand Crosses of the Bath. Cadets of families bearing 
heraldic ensigns are entitled to use their ancestral arms 
as a matter of right, by virtue of their descent ; and 
are not compelled to matriculate as in Scotland. In 
the case of a voluntary application, the total fees and 
disbursements on obtaining a Koyal license for a change 
of name (including 10 of stamp duty) amount to 
54, 13s.; the cost being 94, 13s. (including 50 of 
stamp duty), where the change happens to be made 
in pursuance of a will or other deed. * Where the arms, 
as well as the surname, are assumed provided they have 
been already recorded in the Books of the College the 
charge for their exemplification is 48, 17s. 6d., in 
addition to the fees on the license for the change of 

In Ireland, the fees payable on a grant of arms 
amount to thirty guineas, and on a confirmation (or 
matriculation ?) to ten guineas. 2 

AVe have already stated that in Scotland, exclusive of 
the 10 stamp, the total fees for an ordinary grant of 
arms amount to 32, while the cost of a matriculation 
is only about 14. Everything considered, a lower 

1 The various stamp-duties are in the office of Ulster King-of-Arms, 
payable under the provisions of 55 Dublin Castle, see Sir Bernard 
George HI. c. 184 (llth July 1815). Burke's Vicissitudes of Families, p. 

2 For a description of the records 227, et seq. 


rate of charge could not reasonably be suggested, at 
least in the case of new arms ; but in the case of the 
representatives and cadets of families having an un- 
doubted right to armorial ensigns before the year 1672, 
a modification of the respective fees might perhaps prove 
a judicious arrangement. 


The Penalties imposed on the unlawful use of armo- 
rial ensigns by the Statutes of 1592 and 1672 are : 

1. Escheat to the Sovereign of all the goods and gear 
on which the said ensigns are engraven, painted, or other- 
wise represented ; and, 

2. Payment of one hundred pounds, toties quoties, to 
the Lyon. 

Failing payment of the fine, as already stated, the Act 
of 1592 ordains incarceration in the nearest prison 
" during the pleasure of the Lyon ;" but this alarming 
alternative is not repeated in the later Statute, which 
also remits any penalties that may have been incurred 
" before the proclamation to be issued thereupon." 

The Preamble of the Act of 1672 makes very pointed 
reference to the prevailing irregularities with respect to 
the unlawful assumption of Arms, not only on the part 
of persons who should riot bear any such distinctions, 
but also on the part of those who may legally bear them, 
and who either usurp the ensigns of their Chief without 
marks of difference, or adopt arms which were not carried 
by their predecessors. After ratifying the former Statute 


of 1592, the Act ordains that, with a view to its more 
vigorous prosecution, " Letters of publication of this pre- 
sent Act be directed to be executed at the market-cross 
of the head Burghs of the Shires," etc., enjoining certain 
procedure, with reference to their arms, on the part 
of " all and sundry Prelates, Noblemen, Barons, and 
Gentlemen" who use any signs-armorial. The following 
is a copy of a Messenger's printed Charge, requiring 
compliance with the injunction of the Letters in ques- 
tion, a few years after the passing of the Statute : 
"I, , Messenger, by virtue of Letters of Horn- 
ing raised at the instance of Sir Charles Areskine of 
Cambo, Knight Baronet, Lyon King-of-Armes : in our 
Soveraign Lord's Name and Authority, commands and 
charges you, - , to bring or send an accompt to 

the Complainer, or his Clerk in his Office at Edinburgh, 
of what Signs or Arms-armorial ye are accustomed to 
bear and use ; and whether ye be descended of any 
Family the Arms whereof ye bear, and of what Brother 
of the Family ye are descended, with certificats from 
persons of Honour, Noblemen, and Gentlemen of Quality, 
anent the verity of your having and wearing these Arms, 
and of your descent as aforesaid, to the effect the Corn- 
plainer may distinguish these Arms with congruent dif- 
ferences, and matriculate the same in his Books and 
Registers, and give Extracts of the Blazoning of the 
saidis Arms under his hand and seal of office ; and also 
to pay to the Complainer the sum of an hundred pounds 
Scots, as the penalty already incurred by you through 
using your Arms any manner of way, after expiring of 


year and day from the date of the Proclamation under 
written, issued upon the Act after specified, conform to 
an Act of Parliament, entituled 125 Act of K. James the 
Sixth, Parl. 12, anerit the Office of the Lyon King-of- 
Arms, and also conform to an particular Act of Ratifica- 
tion made in the first Session of the second Parliament, 
dated 23 September 1669. And to the letters of pub- 
lication made upon the twenty-one Act of the third 
Session of the second Parliament of K. Charles the 
Second, after publication of year and day is expired, 
conform to the Principal Letters in all points, within six 
dayes next after this my Charge, under the pain of Re- 
bellion, and putting you to the Horn ; wherein if ye 
failzie, I will denounce, etc., conform to the saidis 
Letters, bearing date, The fourth day of June 1675. 
Ex deliberatione Dominorum Oonsilii." * 

After referring to the statutory pains denounced 
against the bearers of " false arms/' the rescinded Act of 
1662 expressly declares " that no painters, masons, gold- 
smiths, wrights, gravers, or any other of that nature, take 

1 This Charge is pasted on the sumption of armorial ensigns without 

inside of one of the boards of a folio the authority of the College of Heralds 

MS. in the Advocates' Library, con- is interdicted, "upon pain of imprison - 

taining "Illuminate Arms" by J. ii)ent and fine at the King's pleasure." 

Sawers, Herald Painter in the reign Again, in the year 1555, a Royal Com- 

of Charles I. (31. 4. 4.) mission of Visitation was directed to 

The undue assumption of arms Clarenceux King-of-Arms, in which 

appears to have been checked in Eng- he is enjoined " to correct all false 

land as early as the beginning of the crests, arms, and cognizances ;" and 

fifteenth century, when an edict on a few years later, the same officer was 

the subject, to which we have already invested with similar atithority, be- 

referred, was promulgated by Henry sides being empowered to levy fines 

v. In the Order issued by the Earl from delinqxients at his will and 

Marshal of England, in 1509, the as- pleasure. 


upon them to grave, cut, paint, or carve any arms what- 
soever but such as are approven by the Lyon King-of- 
Arins." The necessity for such an injunction is acknow- 
ledged by Nisbet in his remarks upon the frequent custom 
of persons assuming coats-armorial to which they have 
no legal right, and charging them with one of the minute 
or temporary heraldic differences, by way of distinction. 
" \Ve have reason to complain," he says, " of our gold- 
smiths, engravers, painters, masons, and carpenters, who 
are veiy ready, although altogether ignorant of the 
science, to give to those who employ them in any piece 
of work, coats-of-arms with some of the foresaid differ- 
ences ; not only to those who have right to carry arms, 
but even to some who ought not to be honoured with 
armorial bearings, although they be of some ancient sur- 
name. To which irregular and unwarrantable practice I 
wish the Lyon King-at-Arms would put a stop, by putting 
the Acts of Parliament in execution against such persons, 
by which the arms of our old gentry will be better known 
and more easily distinguished from new upstarts.'' 1 

The irregularities in question do not appear to have 
been confined to this portion of the kingdom. In the 
letters-patent issued by Charles n., in 1682, authorizing 
an Armorial Visitation, it is declared that " no painter, 
glazier, goldsmith, graver, or any other artificer whatso- 
ever he or they be, shall take upon them to paint, grave, 
glaze, carve, cut, devise, or set forth, by any ways or 
means, any manner of arms, crests, cognizances, pedi- 
grees, or other devices appertaining to the Office of Arms, 

1 System of Htraldry, vol. ii. part iii. p. 171 


otherwise or in any other form or manner than they may 
lawfully do, and shall be allowed by the said Clarenceux, 
his deputy or deputies, according to the ancient laws and 
statutes of arms." The same royal ordinance confers 
full power upon Clarenceux King-of-Arms and his depu- 
ties " to correct, control, and reform all manner of arms, 
crests, cognizances, and devices, unlawful, or unlawfully 
usurped, borne, or taken by any manner of person or 
persons, contrary to the due order of the law of arms, 
and to reverse, pull down, or otherwise to deface, as well 
in coat-armour, helm, banners, standards, pennon, and 
hatchments of tents and pavilions, as also in plate, jewels, 
paper, parchment, windows, gravestones, tombs, and 
monuments, or elsewhere, wheresoever they be set or 
placed, whether they be in shield, escutcheon, lozenge, 
square, roundle, or otherwise, contrary to the ancient 
laws, customs, rules, privileges, and orders of arms." 

There can be no doubt that, both in Scotland and 
England, many such irregularities have long been prac- 
tised ; but besides goldsmiths, painters, and engravers, 
there is a numerous class of pretenders, who profess to 
"procure" arms, and whose advertisements not unfre- 
quently occupy a very prominent position in the periodi- 
cals of the day. l With a smattering of heraldic knowledge, 

1 As examples of recent announce- description, 6s. ; large size, 12s. Fa- 

ments, we may give the following : mily Pedigrees, with original Grant 

" FOR FAMILY ARMS. Send Name of Arms, to whom and when granted, 

and County to the Royal Heraldic the origin of the Name, all traced 

Studio and Library ; in a few clays from authentic records Fee, Two 

you will receive a correct copy of your guineas." 

Armorial Bearings. Plain sketch, " Heraldic Queries answered ; Fa- 

3s. ; in Heraldic colours, with written mily Arms found, and every infor- 


they have little difficulty in providing any applicant with 
what they coolly choose to term a " suitable" coat of arms, 
winch imposing invention is forthwith shamelessly ex- 
hibited on the panels of his carriage, the covers of his 
dishes, the boards of his books, and the ring upon his 
finger ; and, in the eyes of the uninitiated, he is as much 
a "gentleman of coat-armour" as any of his neighbours, 
even although they may be able to instruct their descent 
from the days of Malcolm Canmore. 1 

According to the notanclum annexed to the " Table" 
of Matriculation Fees, dated 1760, "to force nobility 
and gentlemen to matriculate, the Lyon causes execute 
a precept in the fiscaFs name, and on the dependence, 
arrests the equipages on which the arms are painted." 
Again, in the language of the Commissioners' Report, " it 
is in the name of the procurator-fiscal of the Lyon Court, 
that any proceedings are conducted which are competent 
before the Lord Lyon, by the Statutes for compelling 
persons to matriculate their arms, by seizing or procuring 
forfeitures of the furniture, or articles on which arms are 

matiou afforded. Drawing of Arms, fault, about xx. years past, he lost one 

2s. 4>d. ; Painting ditto, 5s.; Book- of his ears." The warrant sets forth 

Plate Crest, 5s. ; Arms, etc., from the names of nearly one hundred fa- 

20s. ; Crest on Card-Plate and one milies, chiefly in the counties of 

hundred Cards, 8s. ; Queries answered Essex, Hertford, and Cambridge, for 

for Is. Saxon, Mediaeval, and Modern whom he compiled spurious pedi- 

Style Book -Plates. The best Autho- grees. So late as the year 1727, an 

rities and MS. Books of thirty-five impostor, named Robert Harman, 

years' practice consulted." pretending to be a herald, was pro- 

1 In the year 1597, the Earl of secuted by the English College of 

Essex, Earl Marshal, issued a wan-ant Arms at the Suffolk quarter-sessions 

for the apprehension of one W. Da- held at Beccles, and, on being con- 

kyns, " a notable dealer in arms, and victed, was punished with fine, im- 

maker of false pedigrees, for which prisoninent, and the pillory. 


engraved, when no proper matriculation has taken place." 
The Report, however, goes on to say " that the exercise 
of this power on the part of the Lord Lyon, though it is 
conferred, by Acts of the Scottish Legislature, has been 
seldom resorted to, whether from a consideration that the 
enforcement of his right would be felt as a harsh and 
oppressive act, or tljat the relaxation and latitude which 
have been introduced into the later practice of the office, 
in the grant of arms, may have rendered the observance 
of the rules more difficult," 1 We learn also from the 
evidence of Mr. James Williamson, who held the office of 
procurator-fiscal in 1821, "that there have been no pro- 
ceedings at his instance since his appointment (in 1806), 
in matters connected with armorial bearings ; that in as 
far as he knows, there were none such in the time of his 
predecessor, and that he would not therefore be inclined 
to institute proceedings in a case of that nature, without 
express authority from the Lord Lyon or his Depute." 2 

Of the alternative reasons, suggested by the Com- 
missioners, why the exercise of the corrective power, 
which is distinctly conferred upon the Lord Lyon by 
the Acts of Parliament, should so seldom have been 
resorted to, there can be very little doubt that the second 
is by far the most satisfactory. But for the " relaxation 
and latitude" which is universally admitted to have been 
introduced into the practice of the Lyon Office in the 
grants of armorial bearings, the enforcement of the 
statutory rights would never have been considered either 

1 Report on the Lyon Court, 1822, p. 29. 

2 Ibid. Appendix No. v. p. 52. 


"harsh" or "oppressive," but, on the contrary, would 
have met with the unqualified approbation of all reason- 
able members of the community. How far any special 
right or privilege could be affected by a dereliction of 
official duty, might perhaps at one time have proved a 
question of no very easy solution ; but now that the 
authorities of the Lyon Office have evinced a laudable 
desire to carry the various legislative provisions into 
execution, as well as to correct any abuses that may 
have been gradually introduced, there seems to be no 
reason whatever why the statutory pains and penalties 
should not be more rigidly enforced. And, most as- 
suredly, many cases of unwarrantable assumption are 
daily presenting themselves, which loudly call for the 
interference of the Lord Lyon. Within a gunshot of 
the Register House, numerous instances might be pointed 
out of landowners and fundholders, lawyers and physi- 
cians, soldiers and sailors, merchants and shopkeepers- 
individuals, in short, belonging to every rank and pro- 
fession who, without being able to plead regular in- 
heritance or any other justification, unscrupulously adopt 
and wear the most elaborate heraldic insignia, The 
very cabmen on our streets have the effrontery to em- 
blazon their vehicles with armorial devices, among which 
may occasionally be recognised the escutcheon of Clan 
Donna chie and the ensio-ns of Lochiel ! l Less than a 


1 Even William Campbell, the wor- the Scottish metropolis must have 

thy piper of the Grassmarket, dis- long been familiar. It would appear, 

plays the boar's head of his ducal moreover, that the light-fingered fra- 

chieftaiu on the panel of his velooi- ternity extend their patronage to the 

pede, with which every almsgiver in mysteries of the noble science. A 


hundred years ago, the indignant chieftains would have 
inflicted a very summary punishment upon these daring 
offenders, by thrusting a red-hot poker through the offend- 
ing panels, without waiting for the interposition of the 
Lyon Kirig-at-Arms. Nor is this undisguised assump- 
tion confined to the metropolis. In every corner of the 
kingdom the same imiversal system of appropriation is 
now so much in vogue, that we are reminded of the story 
of the English diplomatist who happened to send his 
London chariot to the coachmaker's, during his residence 
at New York. On calling shortly afterwards, he was 
somewhat astonished to discover his ancestral shield and 
crest figuring upon half-a-dozen Yankee gigs and dog- 
carts ; and having asked for an explanation, he was im- 
mediately informed, with the most perfect sang froid, 
that " the pattern seemed to be very much admired" ! 

The unlawful assumption of armorial ensigns appears 
to have occupied the attention of the authorities of the 
Lyon Ofiice about the middle of last century. Along 
with an intimation relative to messengers-at-arms, the' 

recent writer informs us, that " there pierces a Jicnrt ; it figures also in the 

is a vagabond heraldry by which gamblers' through three dice. The 

every vagabond has his crest, and arrow, surmounted by a black globe, 

every profession its coat - of - arms ; signifies fear of capture; a stroke 

and the vagabond who should as- with a twisted line about it signifies 

sunui his neighbour's quarterings an exploit ; a line attached to this 

would atone for it in blood. His points out the way the writer has 

crest may be either out of the world gone ; the hooks above the line are 

of animals or Euclid a horse or a for men, those below for the women ; 

parallelogram ; sometimes a cross the cypher above for the leader's 

wound round with a serpent ; per- children he being marked by his 

haps a visor over a fox. . . . The crest ; those below for the children 

thieves' arms are a key pierced by of the rest." Good Words, Decem- 

an arrow ; in the beggars', the arrow ber 18G'2. 


following announcement is two or three times repeated 
in the Caledonian Mercury for the year 1758 : 

" By order of the Hon. John Campbell-Hooke, Esq., 
Lyon King-of-Arms. All such persons as assume to 
themselves armorial bearings, without matriculating in 
the Lyon Books, will be prosecuted according to law ; 
and all plate, equipages, and others, Avhereon such arms 
are painted or engraven, will be seized as forfeited in 
terms of the Acts of Parliament thereanent. ROBERT 
DONALDSON, Clerk -Dep u te." 

In the year 1771, a much more detailed commination 
was repeatedly inserted by the same Lord Lyon in all 
the newspapers published in Scotland, and forms No. n. 
of the Appendix to the Petition of the Procurator-Fiscal 
of the Lyon Court, a few years afterwards, in the action, 
already referred to, against the laird of Touchadam. 

Again, about thirty years ago, a Notice on the same 
subject was issued in the following terms : 

" It having come to the knowledge of the LORD LYON 
that many INDIVIDUALS are bearing and using ARMO- 
RIAL ENSIGNS without due authority, and that many 
CADETS OF FAMILIES are using and carrying the Arms 
appropriated to the Houses from which they descend, 
without any proper difference authorized by the LORD 
LYON, and properly matriculated in his Lordship's books, 
NOTICE is HEREBY GIVEN, that ALL persons who have 
assumed or shall assume to themselves ARMORIAL EN- 
SIGNS OR BEARINGS, without official license and authority 
so to do, are rendering themselves liable to the DELE- 
TION of their Arms, and the CONFISCATION of all plate, 


equipages, and others whereon such Arms are engraved 
or depicted, in terms of the different Acts of Parliament, 
investing the LORD LYON with the powers of regulating 
the wearing and bearing of all Armorial Bearings in 
Scotland. By order of the Right Hon. the LORD LYON, 
King-of-Arms, A. MACDONALD, Lyon-Clerk Depute." 

28th April 1832." 

Similar notices have been published, from time to 
time, since the year 1832, the latest anouncements 
having been pretty frequently repeated in the columns 
of the newspapers only two or three years ago. It does 
not appear, however, that any formal proceedings have 
ever taken place in consequence of these intimations, 
although it is understood, that an occasional " remon- 
strance " has been most considerately resorted to, and in 
several instances with the' desired effect. How long 
such forbearance may be practised must, of course, 
depend on the feelings and ideas of the authorities 
themselves ; but if they have any real desire to fulfil 
the duties of their office, there appears to be no good 
reason why they should not exercise with firmness and 
consistency the powers with which they have been in- 
vested. In ah 1 such cases, the greater the forbearance, 
the greater the abuse ; and the longer the irregularities, 
in question are overlooked, the inclination to check 
them will probably become the less powerful. Let the 
officials select a few good subjects in the first instance, 
and after a beginning has been fairly made, let them 
not rest satisfied until the pcHges of the Lyon I^egistcr 


exhibit the armorial bearings of all the " well-deserving 
persons" in the community. Among these we should, 
of course, expect to find our principal modern land- 
owners, along with the merchant princes of the West, 
and the leading professional men of the metropolis. As 
the penal provisions of the Statutes have so long been 
disregarded, a reasonable warning ought assuredly to be 
given before " deletion " or " confiscation " is carried 
into effect ; and if approached in the proper spirit, we 
cannot suppose that many of the usurpers in question 
would long hesitate between the matriculation of their 
Arms on the one hand, and the surrender of their 
plate, equipages, etc., to the tender mercies of the Lord 
Lyon, on the other. In a very large number of cases, 
the pretension to the assumed ensigns cannot be vindi- 
cated even on the ground of long usage ; and, more- 
over, as Dallaway truly observes, " assumption of ever 
so long standing cannot establish right, so long as an 
institution subsists, to the official decisions of which 
these claims are at all times amenable, and which still . 
retains power to annul or confirm them." 

The extraordinary laxity of our practice in matters of 
Arms and Pedigree has long formed a subject of well- 
founded complaint, and presents a striking contrast to the 
rigorous ordinances of some of the continental nations 
relative to such distinctions. In the Appendix to the 
" Saltfoot Controversy," 1 Mr. Riddell quotes the fol- 
lowing passages from the Meditationes ad Pandectas 
of the celebrated Leyserus, with reference to the unlaw- 

1 Pp. 121-123. 


ful assumption of Arms and the fabrication of false 
Pedigrees : 

"FALSARII SUNT qui insignia sibi, nobilitatem, vel 
antiquitatem generis, arrogant. Nihil frequeritius est, 
quam insignia sibi propria auctoritate sumere, cogno- 
mini suo istam nobilitatis iiotam ' von ' prsepoiiere, vel 
si quis recenter nobilis creatur, antiquitatem generis 
fingere, et in priscam familiam sese asserere. Atque 
tamen, qui hoc faciunt FALSARII MANIFESTI SUNT." 

"FALSUM COMMITTUNT viri docti, qui hominibus de 
plebe nobilitatem, insignia et antiquitatem generis ad- 
lingunt. Pcena eorum'ad ULTIMUM SUPPLICIUM extendi 
potest ! Declamavi contra eos, qui insignia sibi, nobi- 
litatem vel antiquitatem generis arrogant. Quod falsi 
genus asperte damnatur in L. 13 pr. et L, 27, ult. de 
L. Cornelia de falsis. Parum tamen isti falsarii pro- 
ficerent, ni adjutores haberent, doctos magnaeque in 
republica literaria auctoritatis viros. Hos scilicet mer- 
cede conducuiit, ut sibi stemma, nomen, genus, familiam, 
ma j ores ex penitissima antiquitate eruant et adfingant. 

Oportebat igitur hos alienorum falsorum 

fabricatores gravius etiam, quam qui eos conducunt, 
puniri. Interest inter utrosque, quod inter assasinos et 
assasinatores, quorum illi secundum Carpzovium i'ti 
Qucvst* crim. 19 n. 15 et 19, ROTA, hi GLADIO, puni- 

The proverbial inaccuracy, or rather untruthfulness, 
of numerous pedigrees contained in modern genealogical 
works appears to be commonly regarded as a very 
venial breach of morals one of the many laudable 


characteristics of these days of progress and refinement ! 
Ancestors, as well as arms, are readily found by the 
" professional genealogist," and no great difficulty is 
experienced by the " uovus homo " of the nineteenth 
century in procuring a very respectable gallery of 
family portraits, in order to give an appearance of 
reality to the miserable sham. Every wealthy trades- 
man bearing the name of Campbell is, of course, a 
countable kinsman of his Grace of Argyll, while the 
obscurest Bruce or Stewart, who contrives to emerge 
from the masses, forthwith becomes a complacent scion 
of Royalty! 1 

" Omuis enim res, 

Virtus, fauna, decus, divina humanaque pulchris 
Divitiis parent ; quas qui construxerit, ille 
Giants erit, fortis, Justus. Sapiensne ? Etiam : et Rex, 
Et quidquid volet." 2 

Even tombstones, which so frequently speak falsely 
enough of individuals, are made the record of fictitious 


ancestry, and the sacred walls of the Church are pro- 
faned by the falsehoods which are sometimes inscribed 
upon them. 

1 Such pretensions are in utter dis- " A' Stewarts are no" sib to the king. " 
regard of the well-known proverb : 2 Hor. Sat. n. 3. 94. 



NEXT in order to the Lyon Register, in point of autho- 
rity, Nisbet places the Seals of ancient Scottish Charters 
and other documents, of which a highly interesting Cata- 
logue was published a few years ago by Mr. Henry 
Laing, under the auspices of the Bannatyne Club. 1 Re- 

1 Descriptive Catalogue of Ancient 
Scottish Seals, Edinburgh, 1850. The 
contents of this very useful volume 
throw considerable light on the sub- 
ject of armorial bearings, and correct 
numerous errors and mis-statements 
of modern heralds, of which the 
author gives one or two curious ex- 
amples in his modestly-written Pre- 
face. The Catalogue contains an 
aeciirate description of no fewer than 
1248 seals embracing the period 
from the end of the eleventh century 
to the Commonwealth and is illus- 
trated by numerous plates and wood- 
cuts. Its contents may be classified 
as follows : 

Royal Seals, 
Baronial do., 
Ecclesiastical do. , 
Municipal do., 




Some of the finest seals in the 
Catalogue pertain to the illustrious 
Houses of Stewart, Douglas, and 
Lindsay. In the case of the Stewarts, 
we have an unbroken succession for 
nearly five centuries, with the single 
exception of the seal of Walter, father 
of Robert n. It appears, however, that 
this seal was appended to the letter 
of the Scottish Barons to the Pope, 
in the year 1320, but it.has, unfortu- 
nately, for a long time been lost. 
The seals of the Douglases and the 
Lindsays upwards of seventy in 
number independently of their va- 
luable illustration of heraldic prac- 
tice, afford very interesting evidence 
of the advanced state of mediaeval 

Since the publication of the Cata- 
logue, Mr. Laing has added largely 
to his collection of seals, and there 


ference has already been made (in the introductory 
chapter) to the important bearing of seals on the sys- 
tematic development of armorial ensigns ; and the 
worthy Nisbet would unquestionably have been nearer 
the truth if he had asserted that they form the most 
authentic, as well as the earliest record of heraldic bear- 
ings. Mr. Innes alludes to the further importance of 
seals as illustrations of the state of the arts at a remote 
period, and also to the valuable information which they 
afford as to the real style and title of the owner, with 
respect to which the charter itself is sometimes silent. 1 
" As mere works of art," he says, " these old seals show 
great skill in figure and combination, and evince un- 
doubtedly a clear perception of the beautiful. But when 
you consider that in them we read the first adoption of 
the cognizance of each noble name the descent and 
alliances of most of our old families while the arms, 
though commonly surrounded simply with the name and 
style of the individual, are sometimes in combination 
with the proud battle-cry of the race, or with a motto of 
peace and affection, approaching to the sentiment on a 
modern lady's seal-ring, you will see that a knowledge of 
them is not only calculated to give precision to history, 
but to throw light upon the modes of life and thought of 
our ancestors." 2 

is every prospect of his being induced For a notice of other works on 

to publish a second volume. seals, see Moule's Bibliotheca Heral- 

Accurate casts of any of the seals dica, pp. 357, 652. 
in his extensive collection, and also l See Sketches of Early Scottish 

matrices in glass, may be obtained, History, p. 112. 

at a very moderate price, from Mr. 2 Scotland in the Middle Ages, 

Laing, No. 3, Elder Street, Edinburgh. p. 308. 


Uredius, in his Siyilla Comitum Flandrice, gives us 
an armorial seal of Robert le Frison, Earl of Flanders, 
attached to a deed dated 1072, the authenticity of which, 
however, has been disputed. According to Mr. Planche, 1 
the earliest unquestionable example in the collection of 
the same author is the seal of Philip I,, Count of Flan- 
ders, on which the lion appears as a heraldic bearing 
the date being 1164 ; and a seal of Louis vn. of France 
(1137-80) exhibits a single fleur-de-lis (flower of Louis) 
the well-known national bearing of that kingdom. 2 A 
strikingly similar figure appears upon the Scottish seal 
of John de Mundegumbri, third of Eagleshame, appended 
to a charter of certain lands to the Abbey of Melrose, 
about the year 1170 ; 3 and it is somewhat singular that, 
as in the case of France, three fleurs-de-lis were after- 
wards adopted as the armorial ensigns of the House of 
Montgomerie. While the Scottish seals of the thirteenth 
century afford many interesting examples of heraldic 
practice, it is generally supposed that the stars, flowers, 

1 Pursuivant of Arms, p. 9. lance-head ! Upton calls it " flos 

2 Plate v. fig. 1. From the time gladeoli," the flower of the glader or 
of Charles vi. the Royal Insignia sword-grass ; and the Book of St. 
of France consisted of three fleurs- Albans describes the Arms of France 
de-lis. Before his reign the escut- as " iij flowris in maner of swerdis, 
cheon was seme de lis,i.e., sown with which were certainli sende by an 
an indefinite number of these charges. Aungell from Heaven." 

The origin of the fleur-de-lis has af- 3 Plate v. fig. 2. Laing's Catalogue, 

forded an ample field for controversy, No. 590, and Eraser's Memorials of 

and in the year 1837 a work on the the Monigomcries, i. 10. See also the 

subject, by M. Rey, appeared in seals of Nicholas de Merns (1170), 

France, in two vols. 8vo. It has Alexander Chattou (1226), and Lau- 

been variously supposed to represent rence of Ilifeston (1249). Laing's 

the water-lily, the iris, a toad and a Catalogue, Nos. 587, 175, and 444. 


and other simple devices, unaccompanied by shields, 
which are engraved on those of the preceding century, 
exhibit the elements of the science of Armory. As illus 
trative examples, we may mention the seals of Richard 
Falconer (H7o) two Falcons on a fleur-de-lis, and of 
Patrick Corbet (1170) two Corbeaux in a tree ; and 
also the later seals of Sir Richard Burnard or Burnet 
(1252) & Leaf, Angus of the Isles (1292) a Galley, 
and William Coimisburgh (1292) a Cony, surrounded 
with foliage. 1 On the other hand, however, several of 
the earliest Scottish seals exhibit figures which were not 
ultimately adopted as the armorial ensigns of the fami- 
lies with which they are associated, when Heraldry was 
placed on a systematic basis. Thus, on the seals of 
William Wallace (11 60), Adam Home (1165), Patrick 
Ridel (1170), Duncan Earl of Carrick (1180), and Ro- 
bert Pollock (1200), we find an eagle, a mullet, a lion, 
a dragon, and a boar respectively totally different 
charges having been afterwards borne as the heraldic 
ensigns of these surnames. 2 

The introduction of both Arms and Surnames into 
Scotland is usually assigned to the reign of William the 
Lyon (1165-1214). 3 According to Lord Hailes, 4 the 

1 Laiug's Catalogue, Nos. 323, 201, whether the monument is older than 

145, 450, and 200. 1185, the date of the consecration of 

-Ibid. Nos. 836,431, 693, 164,670. the Church. Dallaway refers the 

3 The escarbuncle upon the shield earliest representation of arms upon 

borne by the effigy (in the Temple an English Seal to 1187 ; and two 

Church) of Geoffrey de Mandeville, years later, the first Great Seal of 

Earl of Essex, who died in the year Richard I. (Coeur de Lion) exhibits 

1 1 44, is considered one of the earliest armorial insignia, in the shape of 

examples of armorial bearings in one, or perhaps two lions rampant. 

Knr/land. It is doubted, however, 4 Annals of Scotland, i. 168. 


lion rampant was first assumed by that monarch as 
the national ensign, from which circumstance he is 
commonly supposed to have derived his distinctive 
appellation. The noble beast, however, does not appear 
upon his seal, but is distinctly represented on the seal 
of his son and successor Alexander n. (c. 1235), with 
apparent remains of the double tressure fleur-de-lise'e, 
which is very clearly shown on the well known Privy 
Seal of Alexander in. (c. 1260). 1 

The shape of the shield varied considerably at different 
periods. On the earliest seals, we find the narrow kite- 
shaped shield of the Normans, usually borne on the left 
arm of an equestrian figure, and without any heraldic 
charges. 2 This form prevailed with certain modifica- 
tions, tending to the pear-shape and heart-shape, till 
about the middle of the thirteenth century, when the 
heater-shape was almost universally adopted. The 
seals of Saer de Quinci, first Earl of Winchester (c. 
1170), John son of Michael (c. 1220), and Galfrid of 
Hordene (c. 1230), 3 afford good examples of the pear- 
shaped shield, while the heart-shape is exhibited on 
those of Eobert Croc (c. 1200) and Malcolm, Earl of 
Angus (1225) 4 As amongst the earliest examples of 
the heater-shape, we may mention the seals of Thomas de 
Aunoy (1237), Thomas Lessedwyn (1250), and John de 

1 Plate v. figs. 3, 4, and Laing's (c. 1170). Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 
Catalogue, Nos. 11 and 16. 442, 822, and 503. 

2 See the seals of David, Earl of 3 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 680, 459, 
Huntingdon, afterwards David I. and 438 ; also Plate vn. fig. 10, and 
(1 120) Plate v. fig. 5; Thor de Tra- Plate v. fig. 6. 

vernent (1150), and William Lind- 4 Ibid. Nos. 221 and 86 ; also Plate, 

say, Lord of Ercildoun and Crawford v. fig. 7. . 



Vesci (c. 1260). 1 The heater-shape continued to prevail 
during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, exhibiting, 
however, a tendency to increase in breadth, particularly 
towards the base. Up to the middle of the fourteenth 
century, the shield is usually erect, and surrounded by a 
legend descriptive of the owner. After the introduc- 
tion of the helmet and crest as heraldic accessories, the 
escutcheon is generally represented couche, i.e., pendent 
from the right or left upper corner the latter being the 
position almost invariably adopted. This arrangement 
is supposed to have derived its origin from tilts and 
tournaments, prior to which the competitors required 
to hang up their shields of arms ; and, according to 
Columbier, " they who were to fight on foot had their 
shields hung by the right corner, and they on horseback 
by the left/' During the sixteenth and seventeenth 
centuries, the armorial shield exhibits numerous changes 
of form, many of which are at once inelegant and uri 
suitable ; and in more recent times, the modern-antique 
and other fantastic shapes which have been assigned to 
it must be familiar to the most casual observer. 2 

A pear-shaped shield, charged with a fess and a label 
of seven points, appears on the counter-seal of Saer de 
Quinci, first Earl of Winchester, appended to a charter 
in favour of the Abbey of Holyrood, c. 11*70. 3 The 
seals of the De Quincis, which exhibit some remarkable? 
heraldic peculiarities, are described in a paper read 

1 Laing's C'ataloyue, Nos. 93, 494, scribed in the Catalogue as ' ; not on a 

and 834; also Plate v. fig. 8. The shield." 

device on the seal of Thomas Less- 2 See Plate v. figs. 9-12. 

edwyii appears to be erroneously de- 3 Laing's Catalogue, No. GSO. 



before the Archaeological Institute in 1845 (and pub- 
lished the following year) by Mr. J. G. Nichols. Behind 
the equestrian figure on Earl Saer's seal, another shield 
is placed, charged with a fess between two chevronels, 
the bearings of the Fitzwalters, Earls of Essex ; from 
which it would appear, as Mr. Nichols remarks, that even 
in the twelfth century " a certain meaning was attached 
to secondary and accessory coats, as is now expressed by 
the practices of impaling and quartering." Saer's son 
and successor was Roger de Quinci, second Earl of Win- 
chester, and Consta.ble of Scotland in right of his wife, 
the eldest daughter of Alan Lord of Galloway. His 
beautiful seal (1250) 1 exhibits a shield of arms totally 
different from that of his father, viz., five (or more pro- 
bably seven) mascles, which also appear, along with the 
fess and chevronels (in two different shields), upon the 
seal of his widowed mother, Margaret, daughter and co 
heiress of Robert de Breteuil, Earl of Leicester. 2 Beneath 
his equestrian figure is a wyvern, which is also placed 
as a species of crest on the top of the helmet of the 
knight, on foot, in combat with a rampant lion, repre- 
sented on the counter-seal. 3 One of the seals of Alan, 
son of Walter, Steward of Scotland (c. 1190), exhibits a 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 681, 682. the Lion were forfeited, and con- 

2 Plate vi. fig. 1. ferred by King Robert the Bruce on 

3 Earl Roger left three daughters his nephew, Alexander de Sefcon. 
and co-heiresses, of whom two were (Chalmers' Caledonia, ii. 432, 523.) 
married to English Barons, and in The dragon or wyvern has long been 
consequence of their adherence to carried as a crest by the family of 
Edward n. the lands of their wives, Seton, and the title of Earl of Win- 
including Falsyde and Tranent ori- ton (or Winchester) was conferred on 
ginally granted to the father of the the descendant of Alexander de Seton 
first Earl of Winchester by William in the year 1600. 


shield charged with a fess checquy, which is perhaps the 
earliest instance of the armorial ensign of the House of 
Stewart ; and the same figure is very distinctly repre- 
sented on the Privy Seal of Alan's son Walter, appended 
to one of the Melrose charters (c. 1200). 1 As other early 
examples of Scottish Heraldry, we may mention the seals 
of Gilbert, Earl of Stratherne (c. 1198) nine billets ; 
Patrick Dunbar, fifth Earl of March (c. 1200) a lion 
rampant ; Robert Croc (c. 1200) three crooks ; Sir 
Alexander Seton (c. 1216) three crescents and a 
label; William de Vesci (c. 1220) a cross patonce ; 
Galfrid of Hordene (c. 1230) a fess between three 
pelicans ; and Thomas de Aunoy (c. 1237) an escallop 
shell. 2 

Many of the Scottish seals of the thirteenth and four 
teenth centuries furnish undoubted examples of Differ- 
ences the charges generally adopted being the Label, 
the Bend, the Bordure, and the Chevron. Thus, along 
with the paternal ensigns of the respective surnames, a 
Label of three, four, or five points appears upon the seals 
of Sir Alexander Seton (1216), Simon Fraser (1292), 3 
Alexander Stewart, Earl of Menteith (1296), Sir Thomas 
Erskine (1364), and Sir William Douglas (1373) ; 4 and 
the same figure is represented, along with the arms of 
Scotland, on the seal of John, Earl of Carrick (1380), 

1 Plate vi. figs. 2, 3, and Laing's Alexander Fraser, appended to .1 
Catalogue, Nos. 772 and 774. deed of homage dated 1295, viz., a 

2 Ibid. Nos. 762, 283, 221, 736, Label of three points (not on a shield) 
833, 438, and 93 ; also Plate vi. figs. each point being charged with two 
4, 5, 6. roses. Plate vi. fig. 7. 

3 A fanciful mode of differencing 4 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 736, 347, 
occurs on the seal of William, son of 785, 311, and 240. 


afterwards Robert in 1 A Bend surmounts the fess 
checquy, the chief paly, and the three escutcheons on the 
seals of Sir John Stewart of Bonkil (1296), Edward 
Keith (1320), and John Hay (1368). 2 In like manner, 
a lion rampant, debruised with a ribbon, occurs upon the 
seals of Sir Richard Wallace (1220), and Alexander 
Abernethy (1292), while on that of William Ramsay, 
Earl of Fife jure uxoris (1358), a displayed eagle is 
surmounted by a bendlet; 3 but whether these charges 
are introduced as marks of difference is somewhat doubt- 
ful. In addition to their paternal arms, the seals of Sir 
Andrew Murray (1292), Hugh Eraser (1377), and Pa- 
trick Hepburn (1371), furnish examples of the B 'ordure, 
which in the two first cases is charged with eleven roses 
and nine mullets respectively, while in the third the 
bordure is uncharged. 4 A Chevron between three mullets 
appears on the seal of William Murray of Tullibardiri 
(1292), and between three escallop shells on that of John 
Graham (1370). 5 The Mullet, Crescent, and Fleur-de-lis 
also occasionally occur as marks of difference. Thus, in 
addition to the fess checquy, a Mullet appears upon the 
seals of Sir Alexander Lindsay, Lord of Glenesk (1371), 
and Robert Stewart, afterwards Duke of Albany (1373) 
in the one case occupying the sinister, and in the other 
the dexter chief point. 6 Again, on the later seal of 

1 Laing's Catalogue, No. 783. 5 Ibid. Nos. 610 and 380 ; also 

2 Ibid. Nos. 780, 462, and 419 ; Plate vi. fig. 12. 

also Plate vi. fig. 8. 6 Ibid. Nos. 511 and 786 ; also 

3 Ib id. Nos. 839, 80, and 684 ; Plate vn. fig. 1. 

also Plate vi. fig. 9. Sir Alexander Lindsay married 

4 Ibid. 'Nos. 608, 351, and 427; Catharine, daughter of Sir John Stir- 
also Plate vi. figs. 10, 1 1. ling, and heiress of CJlenesk and 


There are, moreover, several pretty early examples of 
heraldic differences indicated by bends, bordures and 
other figures being formed by irregular lines, of which 
the indented and engrailed are probably the most fre- 
quent, i Thus, while the bend is indented on the seal of 
John Hay (1368), already referred to, and the pale en- 
grailed on that of Sir Nicolas, second son of Sir Robert 
Erskine (1370) ; the chief is dancette and engrailed 
respectively on the seals of Henry Douglas, Lord of Lug- 
ton (1392), and Robert Graham of Fintry (14 ( 78). 1 In 
a few rare instances we find an Ermine field possibly 
by way of difference as on the seals of Archibald 
Douglas, Lord of Galloway (1373), and John Douglas, 
Dean of Moray (1392) ; 2 while the seals of Sir Robert 
Keith (1316), William Keith (1371), and Sir James 
Douglas of Dalkeith (1371), furnish early examples of 

Although the invention of the art of distinguishing tinc- 
tures by lines is usually attributed to Francesco di Petra 
Sancta, an Italian Jesuit, who flourished about the middle 
of the seventeenth century, a few of our earliest seals 
exhibit lines which may possibly have been intended to 
indicate colour. Thus, on the curious seal of John, son 
of Michael (1220), to which we have already referred, 
the shield is party per pale, a chevron surmounted by 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 419, 312, of the former of these two seals, the 
261, and 381 Plate vn. figs. 6, 7, 8 peculiarity of the ermine field is not 
see also Nos. 302, 084, 427, and noticed by Mr. Laing, whose usual 
846. accuracy in the most minute details 

2 Ibid. Nos. 239 and 260 ; also is beyond all praise. 

Plate vii. fig. 9. In his description 3 Ibid. Nos. 461, 463, and 257. 

FLATS: mr. 


another reversed, the sinister side being marked with 
lines crossing each other dexter and sinister bendwise, 
which also occur in the shield of Alexander Seton (1320). 
Again, on the seal of Roger Bigod (1292), we find a 
shield also party per pale, a lion rampant, the dexter 
side, according to Mr. Laing, being " engraved to indi- 
cate some colour." ' 

Before the general adoption of the comparatively 
modern system of quartering and impaling, we fre- 
quently meet with two or more shields with different 
charges on the same seal. Thus, the seal of David 
de Brechin (1320) exhibits three shields, of which the 
first is charged with three piles in point, the second 
with three garbs, and the third with an eagle. 2 The 
same arrangement occurs on several Ladies' seals of the 
fourteenth century. Thus, three shields appear on the 
seal of Euphemia Leslie, Countess of Ross (1394), 
bearing the ensigns of Leslie, Ross, and Buchan re- 
spectively ; while the seal of Margaret Stewart, Coun- 
tess of Angus and Mar (1378), exhibits two shields, the 
one being charged with the bearings of Mar and the 
other with those of Stewart of Bonkill. 3 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 459, 737, of Elizabeth Biset, widow of Andrew 
and 116; also Plate vn. fig. 10. de Bosco (c. 1280), exhibiting two 

2 Ibid. No. 132; also Plate VTI. lions combatant, surrounded by four 
fig. 11. shields, each charged with a bend, 

On the early seal of Sir Norman the cognizance of the Bissets (Cata- 

Leslie (1292), no fewer than six logue, No. 117). 

shields are disposed in a circle, with 3 Ibid. Nos. 499 and 792 ; Plate 
their base points inwards, each hav- vn. fig. 12. See also the seals of Mar- 
ing the same charge, viz., three garet Stewart, Countess of Angus 
buckles on a bend (Catalogue, No. (1366), Euphemia, Countess of Moray 
495.) See also the curious oval seal (1369), and Isabella, Countess of 


According to some heraldic writers, the earliest mode 
of placing the arms of a husband and wife was side by 
side, and shields so disposed are said to be Accollees or 
Collateral. Sandford, in his Genealogical History of 
England, refers to the seal of Margaret Duchess of 
Norfolk, daughter of Edward L, on which her paternal 
arms occupy an escutcheon placed between two others 
accollees, the dexter bearing the ensigns of her first 
husband, John Lord Segrave, and the sinister those of 
her second husband, Sir Walter Mannay. Very few 
instances of this arrangement a,re to be met with either 
in French or Scottish Heraldry. Nisbet refers to several 
examples of the practice " on the Entries of old houses " 
in Edinburgh and the provinces; 1 but the only illustra- 
tions which he actually specifies are the bearings of 
his " very good friend," Henry Frazer, Ross Herald, and 
James Smith of Whitehill, Architect and Master of Works 
in Scotland, as engraved on copper plate side by side 
with the arms of their wives, in separate escutcheons. 
An interesting example, however, of shields accollees is 
still to be seen on the north wall of the choir of St. 
Giles' Church, Edinburgh, above the tablet which in- 
dicates the burial-place of the Napier family the 
dexter escutcheon being charged with an engrailed 
saltire between four roses for Napier of Merchiston, 
while the sinister bears a bend charged with a crescent 
between two mullets (or spur-rowels), the ensigns of the 
Napiers of Wrychtishousis, and not of the Scots of 

Fife (1369) Catalogue, Nos. 791, teenth century. See Archfroloyical 
767, and 335. A similar practice pre- Journal, x. 143, and xi. 371. 
vailed in England during the thir- l Essay on Armories, p. (>2. 


Thirlstane, as formerly supposed. 1 The two escutcheons 
are placed between two angels as supporters, and are 
timbred with a helmet and mantling surmounted by the 
Merchiston crest. 

Probably the first approach to marshalling is to be 
found in what are usually termed composed arms, of 
which the seals of Eustacia Colvile, widow of Reginald 
le Chein (1316), David Stewart, Earl of Stratherne 
(1374), and Alan Stewart of Ochiltrie (1377), may be 
mentioned as early examples. 2 The first of these ex- 
hibits a cross moline, square pierced, for Colvile, between 
four cross-crosslets fitchee for Cheyne these figures, 
however, not being placed upon a shield; the second 
bears a fess checquy for Stewart, between two chevrons 
for Stratherne ; and the third, a similar fess surmounted 
by a bend charged with three buckles for Bunkle of that 
Ilk, in the Merse, the heiress of which family was 
married to Sir John Stewart, second son of Alexander, 
Lord High Steward of Scotland, about the year 1294. 
As a comparatively recent example of this arrangement, 
we may refer to the seal of John Stewart, Lord of Lorn 
(1448), on which, as Mr. Laing remarks, the charges are 
disposed in such utter disregard of heraldic rule, as to 
render a correct blazon almost impossible. 3 

1 See Wilson's Memorials of Edin- alliance took place between the fanii- 

bnrgh, i. 131, 208, and Napier's Hix- lies of Merchiston and Wrychtis- 

tonj of the Partition of the Lennox. honsis about the year 1513, to which 

The arms of the Scots of Thirl- the stone at St. Giles' most probably 

stane are a bend charged with a relates. 

mullet between two crescents (not a - Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 191, 768, 

crescent between two mullets), within and 1241 ; also Plate vm. figs. 1, 2. 
a double treasure. A matrimonial 3 Ibid. No. 797. 


The seal of Walter Leslie, " Dominus de Ros" (1367), 
presents one of the earliest Scottish examples of Quar- 
tered arms, viz., first and fourth, a bend charged with 
three buckles for Leslie ; second and third, three lions 
rampant for Ross. Eleven years later (1378), a quar- 
tered shield appears upon a seal of William, first Earl of 
Douglas and Earl of Mar first and fourth, a human 
heart, and on a chief three mullets for Douglas ; second 
and third, a bend between six cross-crosslets fitchee for 
Mar. 1 

Prior to the practice of entire impalement, we find 
several examples of what is termed Dimidiation the 
dexter half of the husband's arms being impaled with 
the sinister half of the wife's. This arrangement is said 
to have been pretty frequent in England about the time 
of Edward i. The seal of Eleanor Ferre (1348), en- 
graved in the Arcliceological Journal (xi. 375), affords 
an early example of dimidiation ; 2 and the arms of 
Aylmer de Valence, Earl of Pembroke and Montgomery, 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 496 and Scotland, "says Sir George Mackenzie, 

238 ; also Plate vin. fig. 3. " we exceed not six, only the Viscount 

With the exception of the bearings Falkland, who was an Englishman, 

of Castile and Leon a castle and did bear thirty -three." (Science of 

Lion quarterly on the tomb (at Heraldry, chap, xxiv.) Examples of 

Westminster) of Eleanor, Queen of more than four different coats in the 

Edward I., who died in 1290, the same escutcheon are very seldom to 

earliest instance of quartered arms be found in Scottish Heraldry. The 

in England, is mentioned in an inven- Duke of Atholl and the Earl of Dun- 

tory of the goods of Humphrey de more each carry six, and the Wallaces 

Bohun, Earl of Hereford and Essex, of Craigie nine, or rather eight, dif- 

dated 1322. (ArchmologicalJournal, ferent coats the ninth quarter being 

ii. 343.) a repetition of the first. 

We have already referred to the 2 See also the shield bearing the 

rare occurrence of numerous quarter- arms of Harcourt and Beke dimidi- 

ings on this side of the Tweed. "In ated (c. 1330), engraved at p. Iv. 


and Mary his wife, daughter of Guy de Chastillion, Earl 
of St. Paul in France, are still borne dimidiated by the 
Society of Pembroke Hall, Cambridge, which the said 
Mary founded in 1343. A very curious example of a 
dimidiated fleur-de-lis occurs on the escutcheon borne by 
one of the helmed knights on the chess-piece, presented 

by Lord Macdonald, in 1782, to the Museum of the 
Society of Scottish Antiquaries. It is said to have been 
found in one of the western islands, and is supposed to 
have been carved as early as the twelfth (?) century, 
from the tusk of a walrus. 1 Sometimes only the hus- 
band's arms were dimidiated, the wife's being borne 
entire a practical illustration of the "better half"- as 
on the seal of Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, in 

of the Introduction to the Oxford 
Mamial of Monumental Brasses. 

1 Proceedings of the Society of Scot- 
tish Antiquaries, iii. 104. 


1381 ; and also, nearly two hundred years later, on the 
Great Seal of Mary Queen of Scotland, when married to 
Francis n. of France, where the ensigns of Scotland are 
placed entire on the sinister side of the shield, and those 
of France dimidiated on the dexter side the fleur-de-lis 
in the sinister chief point, and one half of the fleur-de-lis 
in base being absconded. 1 In the former of these two 
cases, the dimidiated arms were quarterly, and accord- 
ingly only the first and third quarters were displayed to 
view. This mode of marshalling is not unsuitable where 
the dimidiated coat is " plain-quartered " (i.e., the fourth 
quarter a repetition of the first, and the third of the 
second) ; but otherwise, it is by no means a desirable 
arrangement. A comparatively recent example of tivo 
plain-quartered coats dimidiated occurs on the seal of 
Lady Margaret Montgomerie, wife of Robert Seton, 
first Earl of Winton (c. 1600), the paternal arms 
occupying the dexter side of the shield contrary to the 
usual practice. 2 The dexter side of the seal of William 
Meldrum of Fyvie (1468) may, perhaps, be regarded as 
furnishing an earlier illustration of a quarterly coat 
dimidiated the upper half being charged with three 
pallets, and the lower with three unicorns' heads ; 
while the sinister side exhibits an otter rampant. 3 In 

1 Laing's Cataloym, No. 64 ; also As stated in the text, however, it 
Plate vin. fig. 4. appears to be the impalement of two 

2 Ibid. No. 592; also Plate viu. "plain-quartered" coats, dimidiated ; 
fig. 5. Mr. Laing thus describes the the sinister half being omitted in both 
escutcheon on this seal : " Per pale, cases, so as to place the first quarter 
dexter, per fess, first, Montgomerie, in chief. 

second, Eglinton. Sinister, also per 3 Plate vm. fig. 6. This seal is 

fess, first, Seton, second, Buchan." appended to a precept of sasine in 



the course of time, dimidiation was superseded by the 
practice of impaling coats entire, the only existing 
remnant of the former arrangement being the omission 
of bordures, tressures, and orles on the side next the 
line of impalement. 

The seals of Margareta, daughter and heiress of John 
Cragy of that Ilk (1377), Marion, wife of Sir William 
Dalziel (1392), 1 and Mariota, daughter and heiress of 
Reginald Cheyne of Inverugie, and wife of John, second 
son of Sir Edward Keith, Marischal of Scotland (c. 
1360) are early instances of entire impalement (Anglice, 
Baron and Femme). It does not appear who the lady 
was in the second of these three examples ; and a 
peculiarity of the blazon consists in the fact of her 
paternal arms (a saltire cantoned in chief with a cinque- 
foil) being placed on the dexter side of the escutcheon, 
while the arms of her husband occupy the sinister side, 
besides appearing on a separate seal attached to the 
same charter. 2 Even during the fifteenth and sixteenth 
centuries, we have comparatively few examples of im- 
palement on the seals of Scottish ladies. The only 

favour of James Tunes of that Ilk, seal of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lan- 

and was communicated by Lord caster, where the arms of his second 

Lindsay to Mr. Laing after the pub- wife, Constance, eldest daughter and 

lication of his Catalogue. co-heir of Peter, King of Castile and 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 205 and Leon, occupy the dexter side of the 
231 ; also Plate vin. figs. 7, 8. escutcheon. It ought to be borne in 

2 On the other side of the Tweed, mind, however, that the repairs of 
in a few early instances, the wife's stained glass windows have some- 
arms are placed in the more honour- times led to the falsification of 
able position, in consequence of her armorial bearings by iinintentional 
being a grea^ heiress or of higher misplacement. (See Archaeological 
rank than her husband, as on the Journal, v. 15.) 


instances in Mr. Laing's Catalogue are the seals of 
Isabella, Countess of Lennox and Duchess of Albany 
(1445), Elizabeth Ogston, wife of Adam Hepburn of 
Craigie (1503), Alison Douglas, widow of David Home of 
Wedderburn (1535), Margaret, Duchess of Chatelherault 
(1560), and Margaret Home, wife of Alexander Erskine 
(1563). 1 In the case of the Countess of Lennox, the 
same arrangement appears as on the seal of Marion 
Dalziel already referred to, the dexter side of the shield 
being occupied by the ensigns of Lennox, and the 
sinister by those of Stewart, with a lion rampant in 
base, for Albany ; 2 but in all the other examples the 
ordinary mode of marshalling is followed the husband's 
arms being placed on the dexter, and the wife's on the 
sinister side of the shield. 3 On the other hand, many of 
the charters and other documents of the same period 
furnish examples of seals of married women, on which 
only their paternal arms appear, the ensigns of their 
lords being displayed on separate seals. As illustrations 
of this practice, we may mention the seals of Margaret 
Edmonstone, wife of Sir Walter Ogilvie of Boyne 
(1485), Margaret Cockburn, wife of William Hay of 
Tallo (1513), Christina Ochteiiony, wife of George Arrot 
of that Ilk (1533), Margaret Lindsay, wife of David 
Beton of Melgund (1550), and Marion Pringie, wife of 
Walter Riddell of that Ilk (1566). 4 The seal of Barbara 
Moubray of Barnbougle, bearing her paternal arms only, 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 493, 663, glas, widow of David Home of Wed- 
270, 406, and 435. derburu). 

2 Plate vin. fig. 9. 4 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 306, 1 210, 
''Plate vin. fig. 10 (Alison Don- 647, 529, and 676; also Plate vin. 



is appended to a charter, dated 1534, along with the seal 
of her husband, Kobert Barton (alias Moubray), which 
exhibits a quartered shield the first and fourth quarters 
being occupied by the arms of Barton, and the second 
and third by those of Moubray. 1 Churches, castles, 
and tombstones afford numerous examples of the non- 
impalement of the husband's arms in the case of married 
women and widows, at a comparatively recent date. 

Thus, on the slabs in the Abbey of Holyrood, which 
commemorate the decease of "Margaret Erskin, Lady 
Allerdes and Dame " (1599), and Isobel Ker, Viscountess 
of Dnnnlanrig (1628), only the maiden arms appear in 
the escutcheons. 2 

According to modern practice, Women of all ranks 
(the Sovereign alone excepted) carry their arms in 

tigs. 11, 12, (Margaret Cockburn and 
her husband, William Hay of Tallo.) 
(Catalogue, Nos. 1210 and 1226.) 
See also Nos. 272, 105, 532, 394, 
208, 143, 180, 114, 301, 1208, and 

1 Ibid. Nos. 604 and 605. In terms 

of an Act of the Scottish Parliament. 
Robert Barton was obliged to assume 
the surname of Moubray, on his mar- 
riage to the heiress of Barnbougle. 

2 See Paper by the Author on the 
Incised Slabs at Holyrood, Archceo- 
logia Scotica, iv. 446. 


Lozenges, 1 but formerly all Ladies of rank bore Shields 
upon their seals. Much earlier examples of the lozenge 
are to be found in English than in Scottish Heraldry ; 
indeed, during the long period of five and a half cen- 
turies (1094-1649) embraced by Mr. Laing's Catalogue, 
Avhich contains numerous example? of women's seals, we 
do not find a single instance of the lozenge the arms 
being invariably disposed in the ordinary shield of the 
day. The learned Sir George Mackenzie makes a most 
unaccountable statement, in the third chapter of his 
Science of Heraldry, relative to the seal of Muriel, Coun- 
tess of Strathern (1284), 2 to the effect that she carried 
her arms " in a lozenge" (i.e., on a shield within a 
lozenge), which he strangely misrepresents in one of his 
plates. 3 The only Scottish seal exhibiting a lozenge that 
has yet been met with is that of Joan Beaufort, widow of 
James i., and daughter of John Earl of Somerset (illegi- 
timate son of John of Gaunt), which is unfortunately 
very imperfect. The dexter side is occupied w r ith the 
arms of Scotland, and the sinister with those of France 
and England quarterly, within a bordure " comporie," in 
reference to the illegitimacy of the Queen's father. The 

1 The origin of the lozenge has Edinburgh, demolished in the year 

been variously accounted for. Ac- 1800 : 

cording to Sylvanus Morgan, while " When Adam delved and Eve span, 

the form of the shield was taken Quhair war a' the Gentles than?" 

from Adam's spade, that of the loz- The Frmch have a saying re l a tive to 

enge was derived from Eve's spindle, the galic ]aw _ .tf unquam corona 

reminding us of the well-known /HHWO tramil)it ad fusum (Le ^ fusil 

couplet which formed one of the m . S p in( u e )_ 
many quaint inscriptions on the an- 
cient mansion of the Napiers of 
Wrychtishousis, in the suburbs of 3 Plate xm. fig. 8. 



dexter supporter perhaps a unicorn (?) -alone remains. 
The seal is appended to an indenture, in the General 
Register House, dated 1439, between the Queen and 

Sir Alexander Livingston and others, by which she sur- 
renders the guardianship of her youthful son, James u. 1 
The same arms, without the supporters, are engraved in 

an escutcheon on the beautiful little gold signet of the 
same Queen, which was found near Kinross in the year 
1829. 2 In Sir David Lindsay's Register, however, the 

1 Plate ix. fig. 1. 

2 Laing's Catalogue, No. 44, and Archceologia Scotlca, iv. 420. 



arms of the Queens of Scotland, commencing with " Sanct 
Margaret/' are impaled within lozenges with those of 
their husbands ; and the same arrangement occurs in the 
portrait of Margaret of Denmark (Queen of James in.) 
on the interesting altar-piece of Trinity College Church, 
now at Holyrood Palace, which Mr. David Laing considers 
to have been painted not later than the year 1484. 1 Two 
other remarkable examples of lozenges occur on the mo- 
nument, surmounted by two recumbent figures, within 
the ruinous choir of the parish church of Dalkeith, sup- 
posed to represent James Douglas, first Earl of Morton 
(who died about 1498), and Johan his wife, third daughter 
of James i. The lozenge at the head of the male figure 

is nearly equally divided by a horizontal line (in heraldic 
language, " party per fess"), the upper portion being 
charged with two mullets, the original bearing of the 
Morton family ; while the lozenge at the head of the 
female figure exhibits the same coat on the dexter side, 

1 Proceedings of the Society of A ntvjuaries of Scotland, iii. 8. 


impaled with the Royal arms of Scotland. 1 Three or 
four late examples of the lozenge occur in the curious 
set of playing cards, exhibiting the arms of the Scottish 
Nobility, engraved at Edinburgh in the year 169 1. 2 
Thus, on the card representing the Queen of Clubs, along 
with the escutcheon of the Duke of Lennox within a 
garter, the bearings of Anne Scott, Duchess of Buccleuch, 
widow of the Duke of Monmouth, figure on a lozenge 
surrounded by a cordeliere or silver cord, to be afterwards 
referred to both the escutcheon and the lozenge, which 
are placed side by side, being jointly surmounted by a 
duke's coronet. 3 In England, the lozenge appears to 
have been used by ladies about the middle of the four- 
teenth century, as on the seals of Elizabeth Darcie (1347) 
and Maud Fitzpayne (1356). 4 In the first of these ex- 
amples, five lozenges are curiously conjoined in the form 

1 Proceedings of the Society of An- in the text, with those of the Duchess 
liquariea of Scotland, iii. 27. of Buccleuch. Three of the Knaves 

2 The author is indebted to his (termed Princes) display the ensigns 
friend Mr. David Laing for the loan of the Marquises of Douglas, Mon- 
of a copy of these playing cards. trose, and Atholl, the fourth (dia- 
Besides the set belonging to Mr. monds) bearing the arms of three 
Laing, there are copies at Abbotsford Earls Argyll, Crawford, and Errol. 
and Drummond Castle. The first of Each of the remaining cards, of 
the set, forming a sort of title-page, which the value is indicated by a 
exhibits the arms of the City of Edin- number (thus <^> 7 signifying the 
burgh ; and the second, the insignia of seven of hearts) is occupied by three, 
the Lyon Office impaled with the and in a few instances four, escut- 
bearings of Sir Alexander Erskine, cheond, with the arms of the rest of 
Lyon King-of-Arms. The four Kings the Earls and the Lords. 

(hearts, clubs, spades, and diamonds) 3 Plate xiv. fig. 8. 

bear the arms of Scotland, England, 4 Engraved in Dallaway, Plate xxv. 

France, and Ireland ; the four Queens, See also the curious seal of Nicholas 

those of the Dukes of Hamilton, de Canteloup (1359), engraved at p. 

Gordon, Queensberry, and Lennox 36 of Montagu's Guide to the Study of 

the last being conjoined, as stated Heraldry, exhibiting a shield charged 


of a saltire, the centre lozenge exhibiting the lady's arms 
(on the dexter side) impaled with her husband's, while 
the four other lozenges are charged with her ancestral 
ensigns. In the second, a single lozenge is charged with 
the arms of Fitzpayne, and surrounded by various her- 
aldic devices within circular compartments. 

Reference has already been made, in the preceding 
chapter, to the custom of placing a smaller escutcheon 
(parmula) Overall or Surtout, i.e., on the fess point of 
the shield. The seal of Sir William Hay, previously 
referred to, affords the earliest Scottish example of a 
shield surtout (exhibiting the paternal arms), being ap- 
pended to the charter of foundation of the Collegiate 
Church of St. Bathan's, in the year 1421. The earliest 
instances in Mr. Laing's Catalogue of this mode of mar- 
shalling are the seals of Walter Stewart, Earl of Atholl 
(1430), James, ninth Earl of Douglas (1453), and Alex- 
ander Gordon (paternally Seton), first Earl of Huntly 
(1457), the charges in the shields surtout being a ship 
(or lymphad), a lion rampant, and three lions' heads, for 
the Lordships of Caithness, Galloway, and Badenoch 
respectively. 1 

with the arms of Canteloup, sup- is supposed to have brought to De 

ported by two lions and surrounded Canteloup. 

by three lozenges, each bearing the 

ensigns not of his wife, but of her l Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 794, 248 

former husband, whose lordship she and 361 ; also Plate ix. fig. 2. 



Ancient documentary seals afford many valuable 
illustrations of the mode of bearing Crests, Helmets, 
Mottos, and other exterior heraldic ornaments. The 
CREST (Crista), as is well known, was a figure affixed, at 
an early age, to the warrior's helmet, for the purpose of 
distinction in the confusion of battle; 1 and there can 
be no doubt that it was in common use long before the 
hereditary bearing of coat-armour. In the first instance, 
crests seem to have been purely personal, and their 
connexion with the family arms is considered to have 
been not earlier than the end of the thirteenth, or the 
commencement of the fourteenth century. They were 
originally confined to a select few, being given by royal 
grant ; and even at the present day, there are several 
old English families who have never used them. 2 The 
assumption of crests (or helmets) by Clergymen a fre- 
quent practice both in England and Scotland besides 
being improper in itself, is not sanctioned by ancient 

1 At a later period, the same object was very commonly surmounted by 
was served by the Surcoat, which the crest, which was often of horse- 
was placed over the armour, and hair, and made so as to look both 
embroidered with the arms of the imposing and terrible. In the Ro- 
wearer. Stowe mentions that at the man army, the crest served not only 
battle of Bannockburn " there was for ornament, but also to distinguish 
slain Gilbert de Clare, Earle of Glou- the different centurions, each of 
cester, whome the Scottes would whom wore a casque of a peculiar 
gladly have kept for a ransome, if form. See Smith's Dictionary of 
they had known him ; but he had for- Greek and Roman A ntiquities, sub 
gotten to put on his coat of armes." voce " Galea." 

Among the Greeks, the helmet 2 Glossary of Heraldry, p. 93. 


precedent, 1 and with the exception of Sovereign Prin- 
cesses, no Ladies are entitled to bear these exterior 
ornaments. On many of the beautiful altar -tombs 
exhibiting the recumbent figures of a " baron and 
femme," in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, the 
crest of both the husband's and the wife's family are 
sculptured at the feet of the effigies. This, however, 
appears to be the only occasion on which crests were 
associated with the softer sex during the best days of 
Heraldry. Their use is expressly interdicted, in the fol- 
lowing terms, at a Chapter of Heralds, held at Broiderer's 
Hall, London, in the fourth year of England's " Virgin 
Queen " (1562) : " That noe inheritresse, maid, wife, or 
widow shall beare or cause to be borne any crest or 
cognizances of her auncestor but as. followeth. If she be 
unmarried to beare in her ringe cognizances or otherwise 
the first coate of her auncestors in a lozenge ; and 
during her widowhood to use the first coat of her 
husband impaled with the first coat of her auncestor, 
and if she be married with any that is no gentleman, 
then soe to be exempted from this conclusion." 

A few instances of ladies bearing crests, and occa- 
sionally also supporters, occur in the second volume of 
the Lyon Register, about the year 1814, including Miss 
William Boyd Robertson of Lawers, sole heiress of her 
uncle, Archibald Robertson of Lawers ; Mrs. Farquharson 
of Invercauld ; and the " Hon. Dame Mary Frederica 

1 When a clergyman happens to Durham have timbrcd their shields, 

be a peer or a knight, he is entitled in token of their temporal dignity 

to place a helmet and crest over his as earls-palatine. Glossary of Her- 

escutcheon ; and several bishops of aldry, p. 162. 



Elizabeth Hood Mackenzie of Seaforth," eldest daughter 
of Francis Lord Seaforth (who died without surviving 
male issue), and widow of Sir Samuel Hood, Baronet. In 
a later volume of the same Register (v. p. 58, 1851), 
under the lozenge containing the arms of Miss Elizabeth 
Kinnear Stark Dougall of Scotscraig, we find an escroll 
inscribed with the motto, " Stand Fast." No crest, how- 
ever, is embraced in the illumination, but the usual pro- 
vision is made for a crest, in the event of the succession 
of heirs-male, viz., a lion's head erased, gorged with an 
antique crown, with the motto, " Auxilio Dei." 

Corporate Bodies are usually regarded as having a 
right to carry the arms of their founders, but on what 
principle they can use helmets and crests, as has been 
truly observed, "is a question not easily answered." 1 
One of the oldest crests used by a corporation (in 
England) is one of the two borne by the Tallow- 
chandlers, which is said to have been granted in 1463. 
The earliest instances of armorial grants to English 
corporations occur before the middle of the fifteenth 
century, in the case of the Ironmongers, Drapers, and 
Vintners of London, to whom crests and supporters 
Avere afterwards assigned. 2 Arms were subsequently 
granted to the principal mercantile companies of Lon- 
don - in some cases, in very bad taste. Thus, the 
bearings conferred upon the Clockmakers and Coach- 
makers, in the year 1677, are so confused as to be 
quite indescribable. 

1 Glossary of Heraldry, p. 94. legist, vol. i. p. 36, for a detailed 

2 See Nichol's Herald and Genea- notice of the Ironmongers' Arms. 


Towards the end of the first volume of the Lyon 
Register, we find the heraldic insignia of several " Col- 
leges, Incorporations, Companies, and Offices within the 
Kingdom of Scotland," in some cases with the various 
exterior ornaments, but generally with mottos Only. A 
few blazons of a similar kind also occur in the later 
volumes. Thus in volume iii. (1826) we have the arms 
of the National Bank of Scotland accompanied by a 
motto, but without either crest or supporters, the shield 
being surrounded by two thistles. Again, in volume v. 
(1849), the original grant to the Bank of Scotland in the 
year 1701 (to which we have already referred), is " now 
herein recorded," having been omitted at the proper 
place. The escutcheon is charged with a St. Andrew's 
Cross between four bezants (or gold coins), supported by 
two female figures representing Abundance and Justice, 
while the crest is a cornucopia diffusing money, sur- 
mounted by the motto " Tanto uberior" 1 

In some countries, according to Guillim, and particu- 
larly in Burgundy, none under the degree of a knight 
are allowed to timbre their arms with helmet, crest, 
etc. ; but, both in England and Scotland, a much more 
extended adoption of these appendages has long pre- 
vailed. The seals of Edmund Crouchback, Earl of 
Lancaster (son of Henry IIL), who died in 1296, exhibit 
the earliest English examples of crests ; and their use 

1 These arms are beautifully sculp- sable billets more suitable than be- 

tured over the principal entrance to zants, as representing the dirty notes 

the Bank. Perhaps the waggish Mr. for which Scottish Banks are so 

Punch might be disposed to consider unenviably celebrated. 


in the time of the poet Chaucer appears from his de- 
scription of the one borne by Sire Thopas : 

" Upon his crest he bare a tour, 
And therein stikecl a lily flour." 

The royal crest of England, a lion upon a cap of estate 
(now generally placed upon the Royal Crown), appears 
for the first time on the Great Seal of Edward in., 
who acceded to the throne in 1327. In 1333, that 
monarch granted a crest to William Montacute, Earl of 
Salisbury, and by a subsequent concession made it here- 
ditary ; l and about the same period a crest was granted 
to Thomas Andrews by Guyen, King of Arms. Accord- 
ing to Dallaway, " crests are not held to be absolutely 
hereditable, but may be assumed." We incline, however, 
to agree with another writer, who, on the other hand, 
asserts that they are " inseparably annexed to individual 
families," and that " the popular notion, that crests are 
assumptive at pleasure, has no foundation in the nature 
or practice of Heraldry." 2 Sir George Mackenzie quotes 
a grant of a crest by Sir James Balfour, Lyon King of 
Arms, dated 1631, to Sir James Galloway, " Master of 
Requests to our dread Sovereign Charles King of Scot- 
land." In compliance with the petition of the said 
"blaster of Requests," that the Lyon may give and 
assign unto his ancient coat armour (a lion rampant) "a 
crest, with scroll and motto, which he may bear without 
wrong-doing to others," the King of Arms assigns a 

1 For the terms of these grants, rein dictce tymbrice posset decentius 

see Dalla way's Inquiries, p. 388, note. conservare." 

The second concession embraces a 2 Article on " Heraldry," Encydo- 

substantial grant of lauds " ut hono- pcedia Britannica, 8th edit. xi. 337. 


suitable crest, scroll, and motto, " as here in the margin 
adjected is to be seen ; all which arms, crest, escroll, 
and motto, I the said Lyon King of Arms do by these 
presents ratify, confirm, give, grant, and assign unto the 
said Sir James Galloway, Knight, and to his posterity 
for ever" etc. 1 In the case of many Scottish families, 
the same crest appears to have been carried unchanged 
for a long period. Thus, the swan's neck, which figures 
on the seal of Sir James Lindsay, Lord of Crawford, in 
1371, is also to be found on that of David, ninth Earl 
Crawford, in 1558. 2 In like manner, the wild boar, 
which appears as a crest on the seal of Sir James 
Douglas of Dalkeith, also in 1371, 3 is still carried in the 
same capacity by his descendant and representative, 
the eighteenth Earl of Morton. The seal of Alexander 
Napier of Merchiston (1453) exhibits a hand grasping an 
eagle's claw, and the same crest is borne by Sir Archibald 
Napier of Merchiston, seventh in lineal descent from 
Alexander, in the year 1582. A slight change, however, 
occurs on the seal of Archibald, first Lord Napier (1627), 
son of the celebrated inventor of Logarithms a crescent 
being placed in the hand instead of the eagle's claw ; 4 
and the former is still carried by Lord Napier, the 
heir of line of the house of Merchiston. 5 On the other 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. ii. 3 Ibid. No. 257 ; also Plate ix. 

2 Laing's Catalogue, No. 510 fig. 4. 

Plate ix. fig. 3 and precept of 

1 . 4 Ibid. Nos. 621, 625, and 628. 

sasine in the possession or the Earl 

of Crawford and Balcarres. An entire 5 The older crest, however, is 

swan, " passant," with a ring in its borne by the Milliken Napiers (Ba- 

mouth, appears on the seal of David, ronets), the heirs-male of the Mer- 

eleventh Earl of Crawford (1605). chiston family. 


hand, it must be acknowledged that a change of crest 
has been not unfrequent in the heraldic practice of 
Scotland. Thus, instead of the present well-known crest 
of the Hamiltons (an oak-tree and frarne-saw) we find a 
boars head and neck on the seal of Sir John Hamilton, 
the chief of the family in 1388 ; the oak-tree, however, 
being carried by James Hamilton, second Earl of Arran 
and Eegent of Scotland, in 1549. 1 Again, the winged 
dragon, which ultimately became the crest of the Seton 
family, does not appear .on the seals of the earlier Lords 
that of "William, first Lord (?), exhibiting an antelope's 
head in the year 1384, while on the seal of George, 
third Lord Seton (c. 1440), the crest consists of two 
spears or pennons? 

The practice of bearing two or more crests, although 
frequent in Germany and other European countries, has, 
until recently, been of very rare occurrence in Scot- 
land. Dallaway gives an early English example in the 
seal of Richard Earl of Warwick, commonly called " The 
Kingmaker," which displays both the crests and the sup- 
porters of the noble Houses of Beauchamp and Mon- 
tagu. 3 Not a single example, however, of more than one 
crest is to be found in Mr. Laing's Catalogue ; and 
among the numerous plates in Nisbet's largest work, 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 400 and that of David Hamilton, in 13G1, 

404 ; also Plate ix. figs. 5, 6. An which Innes thus blazons : " Super 

earlier heraldic seal of the Hamiltons scuto tria quinquefolia." Reijist. 

probably the same as the one de- Episcop. Glasg. vol. i. Tabula, p. 

scribed under No. 399 of Mr. Laing's cxxxii. No. 297, note 1. 

Catalogue is mentioned by T. Innes 2 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 738 and 

as having been extant, in his time, 739. 

in the Scots College at Paris, viz., 3 Heraldic Inquiries, plate xxiii. 


only one instance occurs, to wit, the achievement of 
Colonel Alexander M'Dowall, " Baron of Lodvica in 
Swedland" (a cadet of Mackerstoun), exhibiting three 
crests, and copied from a patent of nobility granted to 
the Colonel's father by Charles XL of Sweden, in the 
year 1674. 1 A curious example of an escutcheon, sur- 
mounted by two helmets and crests, occurs on a sculp- 
tured stone on the house at Jedburgh, in which Queen 
Mary passed several weeks of sickness in 1566. The 
shield contains two coats impaled the dexter side being 
charged with a bend surmounted by a cost or ribbon 
wavy, while the sinister also exhibits a bend bearing a 
mullet between two crescents. 2 Two helmets, of differ- 

ent forms, are placed over the dexter and sinister sides 
of the escutcheon respectively the one being an approach 

1 See Nisbet's Heraldry, i. 413. A 
most tautological, and consequently 
unheraldic coat. Two of the three 
crests are repetitions of the charges 
in the first and second quarters of 
the shield ; and one of these two 
crests figures (i.e., for the third time) 
in an escutcheon surtout ensigned 
with a ducal crown. 

2 The arms in the sinister side are 
those of the surname of Scott, but the 
charges in the dexter are somewhat 
doubtful. Possibly they may be the 
bearings of the family of Wigmure 
or Wigmer, as given in Workman's 
MS., and quoted by Nisbet (i. 103), 
viz., argent, a bend, sable, charged 
with another waved, of the field. 


to the full-faced, and surmounted by a sunflower (?) for 
crest, while the other is sidelong, with the vizor open, 
and surmounted by a bird's head and neck between two 
displayed wings. Below the shield, on separate scrolls, 
are two mottos under the dexter side, " A Vis La Fin," 
and under the sinister, " Solum Deo Conjido." 

A few instances of two or more crests are to be found 
in the later volumes of the Lyon Register. Thus, Sir 
Robert Dalrymple-Horn-Elphinstone (1828), Alexander 
Dundas-Ross-Cochrane-Wiseheart-Baillie of Lamington 
(1837), and Adam Duncan-Morison of Naughton (1853), 
each carry three crests, there being, however, at least 
three different quarterings in their respective escutcheons. 
In the same record, as previously stated, on the margin 
of a blazon engrossed in the year 1840 being the quar- 
terly coat, with a single crest and motto, assigned to 
William Mitchell-Innes of Parsonsgreen we find a 
second crest and motto granted by the Lord Lyon, in 
1860, to Alexander Mitchell-Innes of Ayton, eldest son 
and heir of the original patentee. 1 The anomaly of two 
or more crests over an unquartered escutcheon is occa- 
sionally to be met with in these days of "finders" of 

The house in question is said to have ferred to were formerly carried by 

successively belonged to the Kers of Mr. Alexander Innes, merchant in 

Ferniherst and the Scotts of Aiicruin, Edinburgh, descended from the fa- 

from whom it passed to Dr. Lind- mily of Balveny, in the county of 

say, whose sister, " Sweet Isabella," Banff viz., an increscent proper, 

figures in Burns' account of his with the motto, " Je refois pour 

southern tour in 1787- It is now donner," as in the Lyon Register. 

the property of Mr. Edmonstone. See also Nisbet's Heraldry, vol. i. 

plate ix. fig. 5. 
1 The crest and motto here re- 


arms and "Professores Artis Genealogicge." l Even in 
the case of many quartered coats, the competency of 
bearing more than one crest is extremely doubtful ; and 
owing to the frequency of the practice, an order was 
issued by the Deputy Earl Marshal of England, in the 
year 1817, forbidding the assumption of crests, on the 
adoption of new quarterings in virtue of descent from 
heiresses and co-heiresses. 

Ancient crests, both in England and Scotland, usually 
consisted of plumes of feathers or animals' heads, 2 
composed of stuffed leather, light wood, or metal such 
unsuitable figures as rocks, rainbows, and terrestrial 
globes never having been used when the " noble science" 
was in its purity. 3 On Scottish seals prior to the 
middle of the fourteenth century, we find no examples 
of crests associated ivith escutcheons. Occasionally, how- 
ever, they are displayed on the helmets of equestrian 
figures, as on the seals of Patrick Dunbar, seventh Earl 
of March (1251) a cross in a crescent ; and John 

1 An example of this irregularity stand fixer! or wave with beauty." 
occurs in the fourth volume of the (Mackenzie's Science of Heraldry, 
Lyon Register (1835), in the case of chap, xxix.) The crest of Sir Francis 
the achievement of Lord Gleuelg. Drake, already referred to, would 

o a i T? v T. ic certainly not "wave with beauty" 

2 See several English examples of J J 

i /inAK -I At A\ ^ -MT n the top of a warriors helmet, 

crests (1345-1414) engraved in Mon- 

, o. , fun to Some of the figures assumed as crests 

tagu a btudy of Heraldry, pp. 48, 
,q in very recent times would be even 

more open to criticism. There is 

3 " For crests men choose what still ample scope, however, for the 
they fancy, only it is not proper to imaginative powers of the "finders" 
choose such things as could not stand of arms, to whose consideration we 
or be carried by warriors upon their would recommend a steam-engine, 
helmets, such as balances or such a balloon, and a printing-press, as 
other things, which cannot either very suitable devices ! 



Cumin (1292) a crescent and star ; l and also on the 
beautiful later seal of John Stewart, Earl of Carrick 
(1380), afterwards Robert in. a lion's head between 
two demi-vols. 2 On the seal of Alexander in. (1265), a 
plume of feathers surmounts the monarch's cylindrical 
helmet as well as the head of his charger, which latter 
arrangement also occurs on the seal of the hero of 
Baunockburn (1317). 3 A lion "statant gardant" is 
placed, as a crest, on the helmet of the equestrian figure 
on the Great Seal of Robert IT. (1386), but the tuft of 
feathers on the horse's head is omitted, and does not 
again present itself on any of the great seals, except that 

of James vi. (1583). 4 The present royal crest of Scot- 
land a crowned lion " sejant affronte" first appears on 

1 The badge on the first great seal 
of Richard I. (Cceur de Lion) is a star 
(probably that of Bethlehem) issuing 
from between the horns of a crescent ; 
perhaps symbolical of the ascendency 
of Christianity over the errors of 

2 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 286, 222, 
and 783 ; also Plate TX. figs. 7, 8. On 
the well-known counter seal of Roger 

de Quinci, Earl of Winchester, al- 
ready referred to, a wyvern is placed 
on the top of the helmet of an armed 
knight, on foot, in combat with a 
rampant lion. Catalogue, No. 682. 

3 Ibid. Nos. 13 and 21 ; also Plate 
ix. fig. 9. 

4 Ibid. Nos. 33 and 67 ; also Plate 
ix. fig. 10. 



the small signet of Queen Mary (c. 1564), the original of 
which an enamelled ring of exquisite workmanship is 
now in the collection of Mr. Richard Greene of Lichfield. 1 
The earliest Scottish example that we have been able 
to discover of a crest associated w r ith the family arms 
occurs on the seal of David Lindsay, Lord of Crawford 
(1345), viz., a key erect. 2 With the exception of the 
seal of Eanulph Nevile, Lord of Raby (1353), on which 
a bull's head appears as a crest, 3 the earliest example of a 
heraldic crest in Mr. Laing's Catalogue is the plume of 
feathers which appears on the seal of William, first Earl 
of Douglas (c. 1356). 4 Between that date and the 

1 Laing's Catalogue, No. 66. On 
the counter seal of James i. (1436), a 
lion " sejant affronte" is placed at 
each side of the King's feet. Cata- 
logue, No. 42. 

2 Plate x. fig. 1. This interesting 
seal is carefnlly sketched at p. 177 of 
a MS. volume of General Button's, 
entitled Sigilla, in the Library of the 
Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, 
containing copies of several seals and 
charters from the original collection 
by Sir James Balfour, Lyon King-of- 
Arms, in the British Museum (Harl. 
MSS. 4693), in which the following 
memorandum occurs: " Thir sub- 
sequent sealls (including those of 
Roger de Quinci and David Lord of 
Crawford) is appended to divers char- 
ters, donations, resignations, and des- 
charges, geven to y e Lords Setoune, 
wich I thought not meitt heir to 
minutte with their sealls, and have 
contented myselve to preserve the 
same to posterity from the injuries 
of tyme." Lord Lindsay considers 
that the key was probably adopted as 

a crest, in consequence of the bearer 
having had the custody of the castle 
of Berwick or that of Edinburgh. 
The swan, the iisual crest of the 
family, ultimately came to be re- 
garded and represented as an ostrich ; 
and it is somewhat singular that the 
crest of the Lindsays of Kirkforthar 
combines the bird and the key, being 
an ostrich with a key in its bill. 

3 Laing's Catalogue, No. 634. 

4 Ibid. No. 237 ; also Plate x. 
fig. 2. The earliest known seal of 
the Douglases (which is not inclu- 
ded in Mr. Laing's Catalogue) is the 
signet of William Lord Douglas, 
appended to a deed of homage to Ed- 
ward I., in the year 1296, on which 
the three mullets are represented 
on a chief in a heater shield placed 
between two lizards. The heart 
first appears (along with the mullets) 
on the seals of William first Earl of 
Douglas (c. 1356), and ensigned with 
a crown on that of William eleventh 
Earl of Angus, in 1617. Catalogue, 
Nos. 236, 237, and 255. 


beginning of the fifteenth century, at least twenty-four 
examples occur in Mr. Laing's Catalogue, the date of the 
earliest (Sir Thomas Erskine) being 1364, and of the 
latest (Sir William Cuniugham of Kilmaurs) 1398. 1 No 
fewer than eight of these twenty-four seals are appended 
to the Act of the Scottish Parliament settling the succes- 
sion to the Crown in 1371, still preserved in the General 
Register House. 2 The families of Stewart, Douglas, 
Lindsay, and Erskine, each contribute three, and the 
Flemings two examples ; 3 while the remaining ten per- 
tain to the surnames of Dunbar, Dyschington, Eraser, 
Keith, Mar (?), Seton, Mercer, Hamilton, Ruthven, and 
Cuningham. 4 Nineteen of these twenty-four crests con- 
sist of the heads of animals in a few instances accom- 
panied by wings and other appendages including the 
horse, wolf, stag, lion, antelope, goat, boar, ram, dragon, 
eagle, swan, and peacock. 5 Of the other five, two are 
wild boars " passant " between two trees, 6 while the 

1 Laiug's Catalogue, Nos. 311 and ments of the baron at whose board it 
1215 ; also Plate x. fig. 3. was served. (Pinkerton's History, 

2 Ibid. Nos. 257, 294, 304, 310, i. 432.) The peacock was considered, 
350, 463, 510, and 511. during the times of chivalry, not 

3 Ibid. Nos. 1241, 782-3, 787 merely as an exquisite delicacy, but 
257, 239, 261 510, 511, 512 310, as a dish of peculiar solemnity. After 
311, 312 337 and 338. being roasted, it was again decorated 

4 Ibid. Nos. 294, 304, 350, 463, with its plumage, and a sponge dipped 
568, 738, 586, 400, 708, and 1215. in lighted spirits of wine was placed 

5 The boar's head" garnished brave" in its bill. When it was introduced 
and the " princely peacock's gilded on days of grand festival, it was the 
train " are both noticed in Canto vi. signal for the adventurous knights to 
of the Lay of the Last Minstrel. The take upon them vows to do some 
former was a usual dish of feudal deed of chivalry, " before the pea- 
splendour. In Scotland it was some- cock and the ladies." 

times surrounded with little banners 6 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 257 and 

displaying the colours and achieve- 261. 


remaining three consist of a unicorn " sejant," a garb (?), 
and a bird's wing fesswise, charged with a bend between 
six cross crosslets, being the figures in the relative escut- 
cheon. 1 

Unless otherwise expressly mentioned, the crest is 
understood to be placed upon, or, more strictly speaking, 
within a WREATH, consisting of a twisted garland or fillet 
of silk, -believed to have been copied by the crusaders 
from the turbans of the Saracens, by which the crest 
and mantling are supposed to be fastened to the helmet. 
The wreath was twisted together by the lady who chose 
the wearer as her favourite knight in the days of tilts 
and tournaments. About the middle of the fourteenth 
century, it took the place of the cointise or lady's scarf, 
called the " kerchief of plesaunce," which was attached 
to a staple at the apex of the tilting-helm. 2 

" There many a youthful knight, full keen 
To gain his spurs, in arms was seen, 
With favour in his crest or glove, 
Memorial of his ladye-love." 3 

" Fair lord, whose name I know not, will you wear 

My favour at this tourney ] 

Then he bound 

Her token on his helmet." 4 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 1215, 4 Tennyson's Idylls, "Elaine." 
304, and 568. " Many of the greatest tourua- 

2 An example of the cointise occurs ments," says Brydson, "were held 
on the seal of Thomas, Earl of Lan- at the marriages of princes. Accord- 
caster (grandson of Henry in.), who ingly, the custom of giving Favours 
was beheaded in 1322. See Planche's at marriages continues to the pre- 
Pursuivant of Arms, p. 175. sent day." View of Heraldry, 

3 Lay of the Last Minstrel, Canto p. 50. 
iv. stanza 19. 



The wreath is usually tinctured with the principal 
metal and colour in the escutcheon alternately, 1 and 
should always consist of an equal number of divisions, 
which are now restricted to six. In the case of a 
quartered coat, only the tinctures of the paternal arms 
ought to appear in the wreath. Sir George Mackenzie, 
however, considers that the wreath should embrace all 
the tinctures of the escutcheon, beginning with the field, 
and proceeding with " the immediate charge, and after 
that the next mediate, and so forth, if there be more 
charges than one." He even includes the red " members" 

1 In like manuer, the Liveries of 
servants and retainers are generally 
of the principal metal and colour of 
their master's arms. According to 
Du Oange, the splendid habits which 
royal households anciently received 
at great festivals were called " Li- 
veries," from the circumstance of 
their being ddivtred or presented by 
the Sovereign such occasions being 
termed Liberationes. The Badge (to 
lie afterwards referred to) was gene- 
rally represented upon a ground tinc- 
tured of the livery colours of the 
family. In the days of chivalry, 
even a duke's son, as page to a prince, 
did not disdain to wear his master's 
livery. An esquire's son willingly 
wore the livery of the knight whom 
he served ; and a gentleman's son, 
similarly dressed, performed the duty 
of servant to the esquire. Since the 
reign of Charles II., however, livery 
has only been worn by the lower 
class of male household servants, 
who are usually addressed by their 
Christian names. Many of the appen- 

dages of livery may lie traced to 
fashions in dress once patronized by 
noblemen. The long waistcoat of the 
groom is the old under-coat of the 
esquire, and the three-cornered hat 
of the coachman the acknowledged 
chief of the liveried corps once 
figured at Court on the brows of the 
aristocracy. {See Ency. Brit. 8th 
edit. xiii. 524). The liveries adopted 
by the Sovereigns of England have 
been as follows : The later Planta- 
geuets white and red ; the House of 
York murrey (blood colour) and 
blue ; the House of Lancaster white 
and blue; the House of Tudor 
white and green ; the House of Stuart 
yellow and red (the tinctures of 
the national escutcheons of both Eng- 
land and Scotland) ; and the House 
of Hanover scarlet and blue. Wil- 
liam in. nsed the same colours as 
the House of Stuart, but before his 
accession, blue and orange. Prior to 
their succession to the English throne, 
the House of Hanover used yellow 
and red. 


of an eagle ; and regards ermine as a twofold tincture, 
viz., argent and sable, seeing that " fur is not fit to be 
twisted in a wreath." * This rule appears to have been 
occasionally followed in England, as appears from the 
grant of a crest to the city of Exeter, in the year 1580, 
where the wreath is blazoned or, gules, and azure these 
being the tinctures in the relative shield. 

The earliest example of a wreath, discovered by Sir 
Samuel Meyrick, occurs on the monument of Sir John 
Harsick (1384), figured at page 300 of Newton's Display 
of Heraldry. Earlier instances, however, are given by 
both Mr. Montagu and Mr. Pla.nche, viz , the seal of Sir 
John Willoughby (1340), and the effigy of Sir Humphrey 
Stafford (c. 1350). 2 Among the earliest Scottish ex- 
amples we may mention the seals of Sir Thomas Erskine 
(1364), Sir Alexander and Sir David Lindsay, Lords of 
Glenesk (1371-89), and Henry Douglas, Lord of Lugton 
(1392) all already referred to on which the wreath is 
very distinctly represented. On the seal of Robert 
Stewart, Duke of Albany and Regent of Scotland (1389), 
the crest a boar's head and neck between two trees- 
issues from a wreath checquy, somewhat similar to the 
fess in the escutcheon ; and the same kind of wreath 
appears on one of his later seals (1403), and also on that 
of his son, Murdoch, Duke of Albany (142 1). 3 A Sara- 
cen's head, " vested in a turban, bound with a fillet," is 
the crest on the seal of Sir John Maxwell of Polloc 

1 /Science of Heraldry, chap, xxviii. 3 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 787, 788, 

2 Study of Heraldry, p. 40, aucl and 789. 
Pursuivant: of Arms, p. 176. 


(c. 1400) and has the appearance of being placed on a 
wreath, which, however, is not very distinct. 1 From the 
circumstance of the crest being placed within the wreath 
(as already mentioned), it is hardly necessary to add 
that, although generally only shown edgewise above the 
shield or helmet, it is in reality a circular cord or gar- 
land. A curious illustration of its actual form occurs 
over an impaled escutcheon, exhibiting the ensigns of 
Ker and Halket, which surmounts the entrance to the 
burial-vault of the family of Cavers-Carre, in the parish 
church of Bowden, Eoxburghshire. Between the initials 
T S K (^ r Thomas Ker), and G D H (Dame Grissel Halket, 
his third wife), an erased stag's head is placed as crest 

over a circular (or rather oval) wreath, which is orna- 
mented with a series of angular figures resembling loz- 
enges or mascles. The date under the arms, in the 
moulding of the doorway, is 1661, being twenty- three 
years after the union which the shield commemorates. 

Instead of being placed upon a wreath, the crest is 
sometimes represented as issuing from a DUCAL CORONET 

1 Laing's Catalogue, No. 574 ; also Plate x. fig. 4. 


or surmounting a CHAPEAU, usually called a cap of dig- 
nity or maintenance. Owing to the perishable material of 
which they were originally composed, wreaths were occa- 
sionally wrought in gold to render them more permanent ; 
and Mr. Newton conjectures that these golden wreaths 
may have suggested the idea of the ducal coronet. 1 Early 
English examples of the ducal coronet occur on the seals 
of Richard, Earl of Arundel (1346), and William le Scrope 
(1394), engraved in Montagu's Study of Heraldry ; and 
at the present day, the Duke of Marlborough and Lord 
Spencer both carry a demi-griffin issuing from a ducal 
coronet, in consequence of their descent from the ancient 
family of Le Despenser, by which a similar crest was 
borne. Three Scottish instances of the ducal coronet 
occur in the year 1371, on the seals of George Dunbar, 
eleventh Earl of March, Sir Robert Erskine, and James 
Eraser of Frendraught 2 the coronet, in the first of these 
examples, consisting of three points. The crest issues 
from the same figure on at least three other later seals of 
the same century, viz., those of Alexander Cockburn 
(1375), Walter Stewart, afterwards Earl of Atholl (1389), 
and David Lindsay, first Earl of Crawford (c. 1389). 3 
Towards the middle of the fifteenth century, we have 

1 Display of Heraldry, p. 305. William Eclmonstoue of Duntreath, 

2 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 294, 310, 14 {N ' 305) ' the form f the cor - 

and 350 : also Plate x. fig. 5. net ' whl . h 1S Very distiuctl y re l )re - 

sented, is somewhat different from 

3 Ibid. Nos. 182, 793, and 5l3. that of the eleventh Earl of March 
See also Nbs. 796, 1201, 305, 267, (No. 294) ; and on the later seal of 
and 322, as examples of the ducal John Erskine, Earl of Mar, in 1596 
coronet during the fifteenth and six- (No. 322), it consists of no fewer than 
teenth centuries. On the seal of Sir nine points. 


two Scottish examples of the crest placed on a cap of 
dignity or maintenance, in the seals of Walter Stewart, 
Earl of Atholl (1430), and George, third Lord Seton 
(c. 1440) ; while a comparatively late but very decided 
instance is afforded by the seal of William Douglas, 
eleventh Earl of Angus, in 161 7. 1 Formerly the ducal 
coronet appertained only to military leaders, to whom it 
was adjudged as a symbol of victory, or to knights who 
had taken part in the more ancient tournaments ; and 
many old families still bear their crests in conjunction 
with a ducal coronet, to commemorate the fact of some 
heroic ancestor having been invested with that honour- 
able distinction. Numerous examples occur in the peer 
age and also among the gentry of both England and 
Scotland. We have a highly appropriate modern instance 
of the adoption of a crest issuing from a ducal coronet, 
in the case of the great Duke of Wellington, who was 
thus emblematically indicated as the victorious leader of 
the British Army. On his stall-plate at Windsor, the 
crest of Sir Simon de Felbrigge (who died in 1442) a 
plume of seven feathers is placed above a ducal coronet, 
" which crown, in that age," says Anstis, " was a proof 
that he was a gentleman (as the term was) de nom, 
d'annes, et de cry, which cry or motto was sanzjuver"' 2 
In the time of Queen Elizabeth, chapeaux and crowns of 
various forms 3 appear to have been indiscriminately 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 794, 739, well as every other armorial distinc- 

and 255. The English seal of Rich- tion peculiar to one person, 
ard Duke of York (1430), engraved 2 See also Brydson's ViewofTff-ral- 

by Dallaway (Plate 23), exhibits a ih*y, pp. 189, 190. 
very distinct chapeau of estate, as 3 In modern heraldic practice, 


granted instead of wreaths by Robert Cooke, Clarenceux 
King-of-Arms, and in later times many families, both in 
England and Scotland, have assumed these marks of 
honour without having the very slightest claim to such 
a distinction. By the existing regulations, however, the 
Earl-Marshal of England prohibits the painting of crests 
issuing from ducal coronets, or placed upon chapeaux; and 
some such wholesome rule might, with great propriety, 
be adopted by the heraldic authorities of Scotland. 

According to Selden, the well-known CORONETS per- 
taining to the several orders of the peerage had acquired 
some approximation to their present form as early as the 
reign of Henry iv. (1399-1413), but they are generally 
supposed not to have been strictly assigned to the differ- 
ent ranks until a considerably later period. In the year 
1665, King Charles n. granted his royal warrants to the 
Kings-of-Arms for Scotland and Ireland, for the nobility 
of those kingdoms to wear coronets similar to those of 
the English peers. Probably one of the earliest Scottish 
examples of a coronet, above the shield of arms, occurs 
on the seal of Alexander Stewart, Duke of Albany, 
second son of James IT. (1473). 1 It consists of Jive 
points, being surmounted by a saltire between two 
mullets ; and is similarly represented on a sculptured 
tablet which adorned one of the southern buttresses of 
Trinity College Church, Edinburgh, before its wanton 

mural, naval, vallary, and antique meron of Fassifern, Lord Northcsk, 

(or eastern) crowns, are also occa- Seale of Mount Booue, in the county 

sionally appropriated as armorial of Devon, and Stirling of Drumpellier. 
insignia to support the crest instead 1 Laing's Catalogue, No. 790 ; also 

of the wreath, as in the case of Ca- Plate x. fig. 6. 


demolition in the year 1849. Two later examples appear 
on the seals of the Duke and Duchess of Chatelherault 
(1560), the former being described by Mr. Laing as a 
" ducal coronet," and the latter as an " open coronet of 
nine points." 1 Above the shield, on the seal of the 
Regent Moray (1567), we find a coronet of twelve 
points ; 2 while under the crest and upon the helmet sur- 
mounting the escutcheon on the brass plate (now at 
Donibristle), which formerly was attached to his monu- 
ment in the Cathedral Church of St. Giles (1569), a 
coronet is engraved, consisting of seven balls resting 
upon a rim or circlet, very similar to the coronet assigned 
to viscounts by James I. of England. 3 The same arrange- 
ment occurs on the seal of John Drummond, second Earl 
of Perth (1631), where the crest (which is lost) sur- 
mounts a coronet of nine points ; and on the earlier seal 
of Robert I. (1317), a "crown of three strawberry leaves" 
is placed above the helmet of the equestrian figure. 4 As 
two other examples of coronets above armorial shields, 
during the seventeenth century, we may refer to the. 
seals of Ludovic Stuart, second Duke of Lennox (c. 1600) 
a ducal coronet, and James Scrymgeour, Viscount 
Dudhop (1643) an open coronet of Jive points. 5 A 
prettily shaped coronet of five points occurs, without 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 405, 406. was another of the many instances of 

2 Ibid. No. 808. vandalism perpetrated by the civic 

3 This interesting plate one of authorities of the Scottish metropolis, 
the few remaining examples of a See Wilson's Memorials of Edin- 
monumental brass in Scotland is burgh, ii. 170. 

admirably engraved in the Proceed- * Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 281 and 

ings of the Society of Antiquaries of 21 ; also Plate x. fig. 7. 
Scotland, vol. i. p. 196. Its removal 5 Ibid. Nos. 806 and 732. 


any armorial bearings, on a monumental slab in Seton 
Chapel, East-Lothian, commemorative of Jean Fletcher, 

first wife of Alexander Seton, first Viscount Kingston, 
who died in the year 1651. 

While in this part of the world the coronet is regarded 
as the characteristic mark of the peerage, on the continent 
of Europe its use is pretty freely extended to a countless 
host of counts and barons, who constitute the "Noblesse," 
a term which includes all the descendants, direct and col 
lateral, of every family of distinction. In the absence of 
this comprehensive system, some curious expedients have 
occasionally been resorted to in this country for the pur- 
pose of impressing the unsophisticated public with false 
notions of aristocracy. Thus, the unfortunate " Perdita " 
the prototype, we presume, of the notorious " Skit- 
tles" of Rotten Row had a basket with four white roses 
painted over the initials on her curricle, in such a skilful 
manner that it was easily mistaken at a distance for a 
baron's coronet ! And, in like manner, a certain private 
gentleman, of an ambitious turn of mind, caused his 
chariot to be painted the colour of his crest, in order that 
the ducal coronet from which it issued might appear to 
be the distinguishing mark of the owner's dignity. 1 

1 A somewhat unusual crest is now the star or mullet which the family 
carried by the Morays of Abercairnoy, formerly bore without any such ac- 
viz., an earl's coronet, surmounted by companiment. 


As we have already indicated, only the escutcheon 
appears on the earliest heraldic seals, unaccompanied by 
helmet, crest, or other exterior ornament. The seals of 
the latter half of the fourteenth century, to which we 
have particularly referred in noticing the oldest ex- 
amples of the crest, afford also the earliest instances 
of the HELMET as an accessory to the coat of arms. 
According to 1'Oseau, gentlemen did not adorn their 
achievements with helmets till the burgesses of Paris 
were authorized to bear coat-armour by warrant of 
Charles v. (c. 1370); and by one of the articles of the 
statutes of Orleans, all who were not gentlemen by birth 
were interdicted from bearing helmets on their escut- 
cheons. There can be no doubt that heraldic helmets 
were not originally distinguishing insignia of rank. The 
five different forms now in use do not appear to have 
been employed in England for the purpose of distinc- 
tion, before the reign of Queen Elizabeth ; and on all the 
more ancient seals and tombs (both English and Scotch), 
pertaining to every rank, the helmet is represented in 
profile with the vizor closed, and somewhat resembling 
that now appropriated to the rank of Esquire. Accord- 
ing to Menestrier, " all helmets were, of old, close and 
plain, until their metal, number of bars, and situation 
came to be taken notice of, and that not long ago, but 
since the year 1559, when the French gave over the 
use of tournaments, upon the accident which happened 
to King Henry n. of France, jousting in disport at a 
tournament with Gilbert (?), Earl of Montgomery, Cap- 
tain of the Scots Guards, who thereby was wounded in 


the eye with the splinter of a spear, of which his majesty 
died." 1 

The barred helmet in profile first appears, in England, 
at Windsor, on the garter-plate of Henry Kadcliffe, Earl 
of Sussex, who was installed in 1589 ; and by the year 
1615, it seems to have been adopted as the characteristic 
mark of the several Orders of the Peerage. The close, 
sidelong helmet is frequently used in engravings of the 
armorial insignia of Baronets and Knights in the seven- 
teenth century ; and it is supposed that the full-faced 
open helmet may have become their peculiar distinction, 
about the time of the restoration of Charles n. Not- 
withstanding the similarity of the English and Scottish 
practice as to the bearing of helmets, Sir George Mac- 
kenzie considers that " it were fitter to give Kings 
helmets fully open without guard-visures, as the French 
do, than to Knights, as we do ; for Knights are in more 
danger, and have less need to command. And seeing 
all nations agree that a direct standing is more noble 
than a side-wise standing, I see not why the helmet of 
a Knight should stand direct, and a Duke's only side- 
wise." 2 

On all the Scottish seals pertaining to the latter half 
of the fourteenth century, and exhibiting the earliest 
examples of heraldic crests, the helmet presents a quaint, 
angular, antique appearance, very much in harmony 
with the general design. 3 During the fifteenth century, 
its shape becomes much rounder, and on the whole less 

1 See Les Ecossais en France, par 2 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxvi. 

Francisque-Michel, vol. ii. p. 1. 3 See Plate x. fig. 8. 



elegant ; as on the seals of Alexander, Lord of the Isles 
(1440), Archibald Douglas, Earl of Moray (1452), and 
William Drummond (149 1). 1 In the following century, 
we meet with a few examples of the full-faced helmet ; 
as on the seals of John, fourth Lord Hay of Tester 
(1556), and Archibald Campbell, fifth Earl of Argyll 
(1563) an approach to this form (something between 
full-faced and three-quarters) being exhibited on some of 
the seals towards the end of the fifteenth century, as 
on that of James Douglas, Lord of Dalkeith (1478). 2 
According to Nisbet, "when there are two helmets 
placed on an escutcheon of arms, they look to one 
another of whatsoever quality the possessor be ; and 
when there are three helmets, that in the middle is 
placed fronting, and the other two contourne, i.e., 
turned to it ; and if there be four helmets on a shield, 
two look to two." 3 

The use of more than one helmet, although very fre- 
quent in Germany (in accordance with the practice of 
displaying a multiplicity of crests), 4 is of very rare 
occurrence on either side of the Tweed. Not a single 
example is furnished by Mr. Laing's Catalogue; and, 
indeed, the stone at Jedburgh, already referred to, is 
one of the few Scottish instances that has come under 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 451, 268, nobility bear as many as eight or ten 
and 280 ; also Plate x. fig. 9. helmets and crests over their escut- 

9 n.-7 XT irt^o i nnn i r, cheoiis, "according to the principal 
* Ibid. Nos. 1228, 1209, and 262 ; 

, -m . ,, , , , arms within the shield, and to the 

also Plate x. figs. 10, 11. 

number of nets by which the bearer 

3 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part is entitled to vote in the circles of 

the empire." Brydson's View of 

4 Many of the ttcrmau princes and Heraldry, p. 147- 


our notice. On some of the recently erected stained- 
glass windows in Glasgow Cathedral, embracing more 
than one shield of arms, the position of the helmets 
indicated by Nisbet appears to have been only partially 
kept in view ; as on the beautiful three-light window 
presented by Mr. Stirling of Keir, exhibiting three escut- 
cheons, of which the dexter one (speaking heraldically) 
is timbred with a helmet contourne, i.e, turned (contrary 
to the general rule) to the sinister, while those over the 
two other shields occupy the usual position. 

Attached to the helmet is the MANTLING (or Lam- 
brequin), of which the usually jagged form is said to 
represent the cuts which it is supposed to have sustained 
in action. It had its origin from the cointise or scarf, 
already referred to ; and in an English grant of arms, in 
the year 1334, the cointise with tassels had a cloak-like 
appearance, and is there called a "man tell." 1 Contrary 
to the judgment of Sir George Mackenzie, the mantle is 
often taken to be a " Robe of Estate," which may be 
either of the principal colour and metal of the arms, 
or the outside may be embroidered with the bearings 
themselves, as on several of the windows in Glasgow 

Both in England and Scotland, for a considerable 
length of time, the mantling has generally been painted 
red, lined (or doubled) with white, but properly, like 
the wreath, it should consist of the principal colour and 
metal of the bearer's arms some say the two first men- 
tioned in the blazon the metal being used for the 

1 Article on " Heraldry," Encyd. Brit. 8th edit. xi. 337. 


doubling. In Scotland, the mantlings of the nobility 
have long been red doubled with ermine; and it appears 
to be an established rule among Heralds that no man of 
lower rank than a Knight should double his mantle with 
that aristocratic fur. The Roy id mantle in England, 
since the days of Queen Elizabeth, has generally been of 
cloth of gold, lined with either ermine or white. In the 
illuminations in the Lyon Register, red and white are 
the colours almost invariably adopted ; but exceptions 
occasionally occur, as in the achievement of Sir Frederick 
Pollock, already referred to, where the mantling is blue 
lined with gold azure and or being the tinctures in the 

Nearly all the crests on the Scottish seals of the 
fourteenth century are placed upon helmets without any 
mantling. In one or two instances, however, a species 
of mantling appears to be introduced, as on the seals of 
John, son of Alan Stewart of Ochiltree (1377), and Sir 
John Hamilton (1388). 1 It is distinctly represented on 
the seal of John of Dumfries, son and heir of John 
Michelsone, burgess of Edinburgh (1400), 2 and also 
on several seals pertaining to the latter half of the 
fifteenth century (1445-98) ; 3 but it is not the invariable 
accompaniment of the helmet even during the follow- 
ing century. 4 

The MOTTO (or legend), formerly called in Scotland 
the Ditton, consists, as everybody knows, of a word or 

1 Laing's Catulofjue, Nos. 1242 and 3 Ibid. Nos. 534, 248, 621, 224, 
400; also Plate x. fig. 12. 422, and 724. 

2 II) id. No. 282 ; also Plate x. fig. 4 Seal of John, fourth Lord Hay of 
13. Yester (1556). Calaloyue, No. 1228. 


sentence upon a ribbon or scroll, which in France and 
Scotland is frequently placed above the crest, while in 
England, on the other hand, it is almost invariably dis- 
posed below the escutcheon. Sir George Mackenzie 
considers that the position of the motto should vary 
according to its import that if it relates to the crest it 
should be placed above that figure, and if to the arms or 
supporters, under the achievement. It so happens, how- 
ever, that many mottos have no apparent reference to 
any portion of the armorial insignia, and accordingly Sir 
George's rule is not capable of universal application. 
Where such relation does exist, the suggested arrange- 
ment is, of course, highly appropriate, and sometimes 
proves very suitable where more than one motto is used ; 
as in the case of the Earl of Winton's achievement, 
which exhibits no fewer than three mottos, of which 
one is placed over the crest, another in connexion with 
the shield, and a third on the scroll or compartment bear- 
ing the supporters. 1 

About the middle of the fifteenth century, the use of 
coat-armour was to a great extent relinquished by the 
Italian leaders, who caused certain emblems to be painted 
on their shields, illustrated by short classical quotations, 
descriptive either of some particular enterprise, or of the 
general character of the bearer. 2 These emblems, termed 

1 Nisbet's Heraldry, vol. ii. part verted." " Enigmas," he says, " re- 
iv. p. 23. present nature or art by the events 

2 See Heraldic Inquiries, p. 391. of history or the adventures of fables. 
Mr. Dallaway considers that an im- An impress is a representation of 
press properly defined is " a painted human qualities by natural or arti- 
metaphor or rather an enigma in- ficial bodies.'' 



impresses (from the Italian word impresa) are referred 
to by Milton : 

" Races and games, 

Or tilting furniture, emblazoned shields, 
Impresses quaint, caparisons and steeds, 
Bases and tinsel trappings, gorgeous knights 
At jousts and tournaments." 1 

Being only of personal import and changeable at plea- 
sure, these impresses were entirely distinct from heredi- 
tary bearings, and only for a short time found favour in 
England. 2 The adoption of the motto as an accessory to 
the heraldic achievement, which had been pretty common 
during the latter portion of the fourteenth century, 
gradually became more and more extended, and the 

1 Paradise Lout, Book ix. 

2 According to Anstis (Ord. Gart., 
p. 184), the age of Edward in. "did 
exceedingly abound with impresses, 
mottos, and devices ;" and that 
monarch himself, "upon almost every 
occasion, was much inclined thereto, 
so far as that his apparel, plate, beds, 
household furniture, shields, and even 
the very harness of his horses, and 
the like, were not without them." 
Maxims and pithy sayings appear 
to have been in great favour in 
Scotland, in connexion with archi- 
tectural embellishment, particularly 
during the sixteenth and seventeenth 
centuries. Many existing edifices 
furnish examples, both outside and in 
the interior. Thus, over a doorway at 
Glenbucket Castle, iu Aberdeenshire, 
with the date 1590, we have "No- 
thing on earth remains bot- faime " 
(i.e., good repute) ; and round a 

shield of arms in the staircase of 
Craigievar Castle, in the same county, 
"Doe- not- vaken-sleipiug- dogs," the 
date being 1668. Many of the 
bouses in the old town of Edin- 
burgh supply interesting examples, 
of which several will be found in 
Dr. Daniel Wilson's Memorials, and 
Mr. Robert Chambers' paper on the 
" Ancient Domestic Architecture of 
Edinburgh." A curious motto occurs 
over an ancient doorway, at the foot 
of the Horse Wynd : "Gif ve deid 
as - ve sovld ve inyght haif as ve 
vald ;" and another formerly sur- 
mounted an old lintel of one of 
the Templar Lands, in the West 
Bow : "He yt tholis overcvmrnis," 
which has lately been reproduced 
on a modern mansion-house in the 
southern suburbs of Edinburgh. 
Scriptural texts are of frequent oc- 
currence ; as over the principal door- 


inscribed scroll still retains its place as an external orna- 
ment of very general acceptation. Although considered 
by many, like the crest, to be of arbitrary usage, the 
motto has been rarely changed, either in England or 
Scotland, by families of ancient lineage, and has gene- 
rally proved to be as hereditary in its character as the 
charges in the escutcheon. In the case of the Johnstones 
of Annandale, however, the old motto, "Light thieves a'" 
(i.e., Alight from your horses and surrender), originally 
used as a slogan, was relinquished for the more dignified 
legend which they now carry, " Nunquam non paratus." 

Mottos are very rarely to be met with on ancient 
seals. Mr. Montagu informs us that in the course of his 
examination of many hundred early seals, as well as 
numerous drawings and engravings in the British 
Museum, he has only been able to discover about half a 

way of Northfielcl House, in the principal mansion-houses, the visi- 

village of Preston, East Lothian : tor meets with legends at every 

" Excep . the . Lord . bvld in wane turn. Dr. Johnson suggests Ni> yap 

bvlds man." tpxerai (John ix. 4), as a very suit- 

At Earlshall, in Fife, and Pinkie able motto for a clock ; and for a 

House, near Musselburgh, we find paper-cutter, we have somewhere seen 

numerous instances of interior in- the following, from Lucretius, recom- 

scriptions. Towards the end of the mended : 

sixteenth century, Pinkie belonged ., Avia pieridum lieragro lo( . a Imllius antc 

to the accomplished Chancellor Seton, Trita solo. " 

who appears to have had a passion r, , , , , ,, 

Probably one of the most appro- 

or Latin inscriptions, chiefly moral - , . ... ... , , 

. pnate inscriptions that could possi- 

apophthegms, such as the following, 111 TJ.J- -L i J.T_ 

bly be adopted is embraced in the 

which occurs over one of the fire- r , f <-, , i 

following words 01 Seneca, which are 

equally suitable for the rich man's 
"Non cede advents rebus, 
Nee crede secundis." silver-plate and the poor man s eartli- 

The taste for these mottos appears enware : " Magnus qui fictilibus uti- 
to have greatly revived during the tur tanquam argento, nee ille minor 
last twenty years, and in some of our qui argento tanquam fictilibus." 


dozen examples. 1 One of the very earliest English 
instances of a motto is afforded by the seal of Sir John 
de Byron, appended to a deed dated 1293, on which the 
legend is " Crede Beronti" the motto of the present 
family of the same surname being " Crede Biron" The 
occurrence of mottos on early Scottish seals is also ex- 
tremely rare. They are less frequent on baronial than 
on ecclesiastical seals, being generally, in the case of the 
latter, of a devotional character. The earliest example of 
a motto in Mr. Laing's Catalogue is on the seal of Isa- 
bella, wife of William Wallace (c. 1160) the legend 
being " Franc/e me docebo te" z Nine instances occur 
during the thirteenth century, including the follow- 
ing :- 

Robert Bruce, Lord of Annandale (c. 1240) " Esto ferox tit leo." 
Patrick Dunbar, seventh Earl of March (1251) " Sigilhim amoris" 
Alexander in., King of Scotland (c. 1260) " Esto prudens ut set-pens 

et simplex sicut columba." 
Patrick Dunbar, tenth Earl of March (1292) "Pin-mi ctu haitt lois 

conduray mamie." 
Brian Fitzalan, one of the Guardians of Scotland (1292) " Tot capita 

tot sent^ncie" s 

Only one example appears during the following cen- 

1 Study of Heraldry, p. 55. is appended to a charter in the ar- 

2 Plate XI. fig. 1 ; also Laing's chives of the chapter of Durham, and 
Catalogue, No. 837. exhibits a robed figure, holding a 

A very early example of a legend sword in his right hand, and snr- 

occurs on the seal of Thor Longus rounded by the legend, " Thor rne 

(c. 1100), who is supposed to have mittit amico." See Catuloyue oftlir- 

been one of the English settlers in Museumof the Archceological Institute, 

Scotland when Edgar, son of Malcolm exhibited at Edinburgh, in 1856, p. 92. 
Canmore, was placed on the throne 3 Laing's Cataloyue, Nos. 138 (Plate 

through the instrumentality of Edgar xi. fig. 2), 287, 15-16, 293, 336. 

Atheling. The seal, which is oblong. See also Nos. 689, 17, 455, and 481. 


tiny, viz., on the seal of Archibald Douglas, Lord of 
Galloway (1373), which exhibits as a crest, issuing from 
a tower with battlements, the head and neck of a pea- 
cock, holding in his beak an eseroll, the legend on which 
has unfortunately not been decyphered. 1 

In a strictly heraldic sense, however, no mottos have 
yet been met with on Scottish seals earlier than the six- 
teenth century, and even during that period the number 
is comparatively limited. Probably the oldest Scottish 
heraldic motto is that of the Lindsays, Earls of Crawford 
being the same as the name of their herald, already 
referred to viz., " Endure," to which the word " fort" or 
" furth" was afterwards added, and which may perhaps 
have been derived, as suggested by Mr. Eiddell, " from 
their loyalty and endurance, in the Royal cause." As 
other examples we may mention the seals of 

David Cmiingliam (1500) " Defeiide 'me Dtm." ('/) 

Margaret, Queen of James iv. (1526) " In God is mi Traist." 

James Hepburn, Earl of Bothwell (1558) " Kelp Tryst." 

(Afterwards husband of Queen Mary.) 

James Hamilton, third Earl of Arran (1560) " Tkreucht" (Through). 
Mary, Queen of Scotland (e. 1564) " In Defens" 
Archibald Douglas, eighth Earl of Angus (1572) " Jamais Arriere." 
Robert Stuart, sixth Earl of Lennox (1578) " Avand Dernlie." 
John Kuthven, third Earl of Gowrie (1597) " Deid Schau." 
Alexander Seton, Lord Urquhart and Fyvic (1598) " Semper.'' 1 2 

(Afterwards Earl of Dunferraline.) 

1 Plate vii. fig. 9; Laing's Cata- 322. The second word of Lord Both- 
lorfiie, No. 239. well's motto (Tryst) is expressed in 

2 Ibid. Nos. 225, 55, 1231 (Plate xi. Monogram a species of device very 
fig. 3), 407, 66, 253, 804, 713 (Plate much in fashion in the present day 
xi. fig. 4), and 741. See also Nos. Two other examples of the monogram 
405, 711, 308, 59, 64, 464, SI 5, and occur in Mr. Laing's Catalogue, viz.. 



In the case of four of these eight examples, the scroll 
containing the motto is placed above, while in the other 
four it is below the achievement. The seals of the 
seventeenth century, in Mr. Laing's Catalogue, furnish 
even fewer examples of niottos than those of the pre- 
ceding century ; indeed, the following four will probably 
exhaust the list : 

Alexander, fiivt Earl of Home (1605) " Treii to ye end." 

Sir David Carnegie of Kinnaird (1606) " Dred God." 

David Murray, Lord Scone (1628) " Spero Jfeliora." 

William Graliam, Earl of Menteith (1636) " Right ami Keascmn" l 

On Lord Scone's seal, the scroll is placed at the sides of 
the shield ; while, in the case of the three others, it is 
associated with the crest or helmet. To these four in- 
stances we can add two other seals, on which, however, 
the legends are unfortunately illegible ; the first being 
the seal of James, Lord Bellenden (1604), which exhibits 
a motto both above and below the escutcheon, and the 
other that of James, Lord Colvil of Culross (c. 1030), 

on the seal and counter -seal of Archi- 
bald, fourth Earl of Douglas, in 1418 
(Nos. 242, 243). The device is thrice 
repeated on the field of the seal, and 
may perhaps be intended to stand 
for Archibald Douglas (Plate xii. 
tig. 8) ; while, on the counter-seal, an 
angel is represented supporting an 
apparently similar monogram. The 
counter-seal of Sir Patrick Ogilvie, 
" Sheriff of Angus and Lord Justi- 
ciar" (1428), affords the earliest ex- 
ample of Initial* in the Catalogue, 
the device being a wheat-sheaf be- 
tween the letters "G. A." ((.Invornor 

of Angus ?) No. 650. Several other 
instances occur on the earlier seals 
of the sixteenth century. (See Nos. 
225, 135, and 166.) A scroll bearing 
the initials " I. H. D. F." appears on 
the seal of James Hamilton of Fin- 
nart, commonly called " The Bastard 
of Arran" (1532) ; while on that of 
Patrick Lord Ruthven (1560), the 
letters " P. L. K." are placed at the 
sides and top of the escutcheon (Nos. 
403 and 712 ; also Plate xi. fig. 5). 

1 Laing's Catalof/ue, Nos. 437, 162, 
617, and 387. 


where the scroll is placed under the achievement. 1 The 
practice of placing the motto within a garter or circle, 
instead of on a scroll, in order to imitate the arms of 
knights, is one of many modern heraldic irregularities, 
and is only exceeded in absurdity by the custom, now 
sometimes followed, of putting the crest within mi 
escutcheon ! 

Probably the most ancient heraldic mottos are War- 
cries, called in Scotland SLUGHOENES, Slogans, or En- 
senzies, to which no one under the rank of a banneret 
was, of old, considered to be entitled. In Scotland, they 
have generally been, confined to Chiefs of Clans and 
military leaders with numerous retainers. 

" When the streets of high Dunedin 
Saw lauces gleam, and falchions redden, 
And heard the slogan's deadly yell 
Then the Chief of Branksome fell." a 

" The Leader, rolling to the Tweed, 

Resounds the ensenzie ; 
They roused the deer from Caddenhead, 
To distant Torwoodlee." 3 

Besides being used in battle, slogans were proclaimed 
in private combats by the attendant heralds, when 
the cry of the successful competitor was also loudly re- 
peated by the spectators. The " Cri " of the Kings of 
France was "Montjoye St. Dennis," signifying, according 
to Menestrier, the banner of St. Dennis. In a skirmish 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 108 and third), Border Minstrelsy, iii. 220. 
197. See also the ballads of " Kimnont 

2 Lay of the Last Minstrel, i. 7. Willie" (i. 206), and the " liaid of 
a " Thomas the Khymer" (part Keidswire" (i. 1G8). 


near Calais, in the year 1349, Edward III. of England 
appears to have had for his war-cry, " Ha ! St. Edward ! 
Ha ! St. George ! " while the Kings of Scotland usually 
shouted " St. Andrew !" The Dukes of Normandy rallied 
their followers by exclaiming, " Dieu aye " (Dieu ayde) ; 
and the ancient cry of the Montmorencies was, " Dieu ayde 
au premier Chretien" the Montmorencies being styled 
the first Christian Barons. 1 The savage war-cry used 
by Amedius, Count of Savoy, was, " Frappez, Entrez, 
Rompez Tout " (briefly represented by the initial letters 
F. E. R T.) ; 2 and Mr. Montagu mentions the still more 
truculent exhortation attributed to the Marshal Luxem- 
burg, so recently as the year 1672 : " Allez, mes enfans, 
pillez, volez, tuez, violez ; s'il y a quelque chose de plus 
abominable, ne manquez pas de la faire." 3 One of the 
most uncharitable of our Scottish mottos is that of Lord 
Cranstoun, which kindly says, " Thou shalt want ere I 
want" a supposed reference to the ancient forays of 
the Borders which is certainly in strange contrast to 
the legend of Craufurd of Cartsburn " Quod tibi hoc 
alteri." An intermediate and strictly equitable senti- 
ment is expressed in " Suum cuique," the motto of the 
Grants of Monymusk, which is also borne (somewhat 
questionably, in the opinion of unsuccessful litigants) by 
the Faculty of Scottish Advocates ! * 

1 We have an early instance of the 2 Others interpret the letters 

war-cry in the Book of Judges, when thus : " Fortitude ejus Rhodnui 

the Israelites, fighting against the tennit." 
Midianites, cried, "The sword of the 

Lord and of Gideon ! and also the Stad ^ ****** P- 53. 

countersign or watchword, " Shib- 4 Lyon Register, vol. v. p. 81. 

boleth." (1850}. 


Many of the Scottish slogans were taken from the 
names of military leaders, and others from the place of 
rendezvouz. Thus, the cry of the old Earls of Douglas 
was, " A Douglas ! A Douglas ! " and of the Homes, " A 
Home! A Home I" 1 while the Mackenzies, the Grants, 
the Buchanans, and the Scotts respectively shouted, 
" Tullich-ard," " Craig-ellachie," " Clare Innis," and " Bel- 
lendaine," 2 the gathering-place, in most of the latter in- 
stances, being proclaimed throughout the Clan by means 
of the Fiery Cross : 

" Fast as the fated symbol flies, 
In arms the huts and hamlets vise ; 
From winding glen, from upland brown, 
They poured each hardy tenant down. 
Nor slacked the messenger his pace ; 
He showed the sign, he named the place, 
And, pressing forward like the wind, 
Left clamour and surprise behind." 3 

In some instances, as in the case of the national cries of 
England, Scotland, and France, already referred to, the 
slogan was taken from the name of the patron saint. 

' "Nor list I say what hundreds more, "Cry Moubray," said the expiring 

From the rich Merse and Lammermoor, chieftain; " Rosslyne is gone ! " 

And Tweed's fair borders, to the war, ,,. . ., , ...777 

Beneath the crest of old Dunbar, Minstrel*,, of thr Scottish Border, i. 

And Hepburn's mingled banners come, 176. 

Down the steep mountain glittering far, 2 TuUick . ard is a hill in Rintail, 
And shouting still, ' A Home ! A 

Home!"' near the mined Castle of Ellandon- 

Layoft]ieLastMi>tfitrfl,\'.4. an; Craiy-ellachie, a wooded rock 

In 1335, the English, led by Tho- near Aviemore, in Strathspey; Clare 

mas of Rosslyne and William Mon- Innis, an island in Loch Lomond ; 

bray, assaulted Aberdeen. The former and, a place near the 

was mortally wounded in the onset ; head of Borthwick Water, in Rox- 

and, as his followers were pressing burghshire. 
forward, shouting 7?<w*///e/ Rosslynt! 3 Lady of the Lake, iii. 14. 


Accordingly, " St. Maurice " was the cry of the Dukes of 
Anjou, while that of the Scottish family of Seton was 
" St. Bennet and Set on," the last two words being, of 
course, an allusion to the name. 1 Mottos referring to. 
the surname of the bearer are by no means common in 
Scotland, but they are frequently to be met with among 
our English neighbours. Thus, Cavendish " Cavendo 
tutus;" Pierreponte "Pie repone te ;" Coleridge 
" Time Deum, Cole Regem ;" Vernon " Ver non semper 
viret;" and Curzon "Let Curzon holde what Curzon 
helde." In a recent volume of the Lyon Register (1846), 
we find a curious example of two canting mottos, in the 
achievement of Mr. Hope-Vere of Craigiehall and Black - 
wood, viz., " At Spes non fracta," and " Vero nihil 
verius." Like the war-cries, the mottos of Scottish fami- 
lies are frequently very laconic, being in several instances 
confined to a single word. Thus, the motto of Scott is 
" Amo ;" of Bruce, "Fuimus ;" of Dundas, " Essayez ;" of 
Douglas, "Forward ;" and of Home of Wedderburn, "Re- 
member ;" while that of the Hays is " Spare nought," 
and of the Leslies, "Grip fast." Occasionally, however, 
they are very lengthy and somewhat prosaic. Thus, 
" Altius ibunt qui ad summa nituntur " is the motto 
carried by the surname of Fordyce, and also by a branch 
of the family of Forbes ; while " A wight man never 

1 See Scott's Abbot, i. 259, and In the year 1495 (10 Henry ni.), 

Man/ Queen of Scote, a Drama, Act an Act was passed forbidding such 

iv. Scene 4. Edinburgh : 1825. war-cries as tended to promote dis- 

" Now, Esperance ! Percy ! cord among the English nobility, 

and set on!" (1 Henry TV., Act iv. who were enjoined thenceforth to 

Scene 2.) "Esperance en Dieu " is call only upon St. George and the 

the motto of the Percys. Sovereign. 


wants a weapon " is that pertaining to the Wightmans. 
"Touch n<jt the cat but a glove" (i.e., without, or but 
with a glove) is the well-known motto of the Mackin 
toshes, and bears reference to their crest a cat "salient" 
which indicates their descent from the Clan-Chattan. 1 
Again, " Furth fortune and fill the fetters" is the motto of 
the Duke of Atholl and various branches of the house of 
Murray, which the author of A Journey through Scotland, 
published in 1732, "defies all the Heralds of Europe to 
explain!" Long mottos are not uncommon in England, 
and some of them afford admirable examples of the 
poet's sesquipedalia verba. Thus, the injunction of the 
Lamberts is " Nee mireris homines mirabiliores !" while 
the Freelings embody their sentiments in three words 
" Nunquam nisi honorificentissime" the last of which, it 
will be observed, embraces no fewer than eighteen letters ! 
As on this side of the Tweed, however, some of the 
longest English mottos are both quaint and mysterious, 
as those of the family of Dakyns of Derbyshire, and the 
Martins of the county of Dorset the first being " Stryke, 
Dakyns; the devil's in the hempe;" and the second, "He 
who looks at Martin's ape, Martin's ape shall look at 

While several Scottish mottos refer to bearings in the 
escutcheon, a very large number are in allusion to the 
crest. As an example of the former class, we may 
mention the motto of Baillie of Lamington, " Quid 

1 In like manner, the motto of the to enjoin the fulfilment of that life 
Lindsays of Kirkforthar is " Live but without alarm, which is the necessary- 
dread" doubtless somewhat Delphic accompaniment of a " me/is conscla 
in its character, but certainly intended recti." 


clarius astris?" nine star*: being carried in the shield. 1 
In like manner, the motto of the Cuninghams, Earls of 
Glencairn, " Over fork over," bore reference to the shake- 
fork in the escutcheon, which, according to Mackenzie, 
has by some been incorrectly regarded as an Episcopal 
Pall, to commemorate the fact of the first of the family 
having been concerned in the murder of Thomas a Becket! 
Eeference to the crest is, however, much more frequent. 
Thus, while the same crest a pelican " in her piety" 5 
is carried by the Earls of Galloway and Moray, the motto 
of the former is "Virescit vulnere virtus," 3 and of the 
latter, "Salus per Christum." Lord Gray's motto, in 
reference to his crest, is "Anchor, fast anchor;" which 
might have been adopted, with great propriety, by the 
brave Sir Thomas Hardy, in commemoration of Nelson's 
well-known words. " Do or die" is the chivalric motto 
of Douglas of Cavers, the crest being a dexter hand 

1 These stars have sometimes been frequently represented as a symbol 
erroneously blazoned mullets, or spur- on monumental brasses. The figure 
rowels. According to Sir George occurs on the brass of William 
Mackenzie, the Baillies anciently Prestwick, Dean of Hastings, in 
carried only six stars, " but after- Warbleton Church, Sussex, with the 
wards, one of the heads of the family explanatory motto, " Sic Xpus dilexit 
being in France, killed a wild boar ; nos." (See p. 11, supra.) 

and to perpetuate this action to pos- 3 The same motto is also carried by 

terity, he added other three stars, the Burnets of Barns or Burnetland, 

which in all make up nine, to repre- by whom it appears Burnet of Leys 

sent the constellation of Ursa Major, was pursued, before Sir David Lind- 

and to make his achievement more say, to change his motto : whereup- 

adequate, took for crest a boar's on the latter, in allusion to the 

head, couped, and, for supporters, occasion, assumed as his legend, 

two boars, proper." Nisbet's Heral- "Alteriusnonsitquipotestessesuus." 

dry, i. 247. Mackenzie's Science of Heraldry, 

2 A pelican in her nest feeding her chap, xxxii. (See also p. 118, note 1, 
young with her blood is strikingly supra.) 

said to be " in her piety," and is thus 


holding a broken lance in bend ; while the more peace- 
ful legend of the Gilmours of Craigmillar is " Nil penna, 
sed usus," to show, according to Nisbet, that " their rise 
was from being writers and clerks." 

By far the most numerous class of mottos are those 
which are expressive of a sentiment, hope, or resolution, 
of which several examples have already been incident- 
ally given. As additional instances, we may mention 
the following : " Denique ccelum," the motto of the 
Melvilles ; " Dominus providebit," of the Boyles ; " I 
hope to speed," Cathcart of Carbiston ; " Tyde what 
may," Haig of Bemerside ; " Will God I shall," Menzies 
of that Ilk; 1 "Si je puis," Colquhoun of Luss ; and 
" Ready aye ready," Scott of Thirlstane. Some mottos 
are in such special favour that they are used by a large 
number of different families. Thus, " Dum spiro, spero " 
is carried by the Dillons in Ireland, by a branch of the 
Hunters in Scotland, and by upwards of twenty other 
surnames in various parts of the United Kingdom. In 
like manner, the national enthusiasm of an endless num- 
ber of true Britons finds vent in the words " Pro 
patria," which are sometimes qualified by suitable addi- 

The BADGE, or Cognizance, is a mark of distinction 
somewhat similar to the crest, with which it has been 
frequently confounded, and among others by the bard 
of Avon, who puts the following words into the mouth 
of the Earl of Warwick : 

1 Over the door of the old church thus rendered: "Vil . God I Sal," 
of Weem, in Perthshire, this motto is with the date, 1GOO. 


" Xow by my father's badge, old Xevil's crest, 
The rampant bear chained to the ragged staff." l 

The badge was never placed oil a wreath, nor worn on 
the helmet, but was often, and is still occasionally, em- 
broidered on the sleeves of servants and retainers. Sir 
George Mackenzie, however, asserts that "the old and 
proper term used in Scotland for a crest was a badge ; 
because our noblemen in riding Parliaments and at other 
solemnities, do bear their crest wrought out in a plate 
of gold or silver upon their lacqueys' coats, which are 
of velvet/' 2 Nisbet seems to adopt the same view. 
" Crests," he says, " were anciently called by us and the 
English (?) badges, and cognizances by the French and 
Italians ;" 3 and in the same chapter, he substantially 
repeats Sir George's statement. It certainly does not 
appear to follow that the old and proper term for a crest 
was a badge, because Scottish noblemen had their crests 
embroidered on the coats of their followers at processions 
and other solemnities. But the truth seems to be that 
while in England the crest and the badge were usually 
different figures, in Scotland they were almost always the 
same. On the other side of the Tweed, according to Mr. 
Lower, " the coat-armour of a great family was of too 
sacred a character to be used as the personal ornament 
or distinction of their retainers, the private herald only 

1 1 Hen. vi. Act v. Sc. 1. The bear and watermen of London remiiid us 

and ragged staff were not the badge of this ancient fashion, to which 

of Xeville, but of the Beaucbamps, also the crest on the buttons of 

who preceded Warwick in the Earl- livery servants is somewhat analo- 

dom. gou s. 

- Science of HeraLlry, chap. xxix. 3 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 

The badges worn by the firemen iv. chap. v. 


cxcepted.'' 1 The following lines occur in the " Hermit 
of Wark worth " with reference to the badge of the 
Percys :" - 

" The minstrels of thy noble house, 

All clad in robes of blue, 
With silver crescents on their arms, 
Attend in order due." 

The crest, however, is not the only figure with which 
the badge has been confounded. Nisbet is evidently at 
fault (vol. ii. part iv. chap, vi.) in considering the latter 
to be synonymous with the DEVICE a term which is, 
no doubt, very vaguely used. Meyrick pronounces a 
device to be "a motto, emblem, or other mark by 
which the nobility and gentry were distinguished at 
tournaments ; " and it differed from a badge " only inas- 
much as it was an arbitrary and often temporary dis- 
tinction, whereas the badge was frequently borne suc- 
cessively by many of the same House." 2 In short, the 
device is almost identical with the impress, to which we 
have already referred, being a "painted metaphor/' 3 
intended to represent some temporary sentiment of its 
possessor (to whom it is merely personal), while the 
badge was "a sort of subsidiary arms, used to com- 
memorate family alliances, or some territorial rights or 
pretensions." 4 Occasionally, the household badge was a 
simple and conspicuous figure selected from the family 

1 Curiosities of Heraldry, p. 145, laway, instead of Sir George Mac- 
note 2. kenzie. See Science of Heraldry, 

2 Glossary of Heraldry, p. 113. chap, xxxiv. 

3 This definition is erroneously 4 Montagu's Study ' of Heraldry, 
attributed by several writers to Dal- p. 48. 


arms, but more frequently it had no connexion with 
them. Generally, however, it bore obvious allusion 
either to the owner's name, or to one of his principal 
estates or offices. 1 As well explained by Mr. Plauche, 
the object of both badge and motto was publicity, while 
the device or painted resemblance (styled the " body "), 
with its accompanying legend (termed the " soul or 
spirit "), was assumed for the purpose of mystification, 
" or at least of covertly alluding to the immediate 
motive or sentiments of the bearer." 2 

As good examples of devices, we may mention the fixed 
star of the Montmorencies with the word " airKavos " 
(without change or shadow of turning), which appears 
on the seal of Herve de Montmorency as early as the 
year 1186; the human heart with the inscription, "Dieu 
et ma fiancee," used by Lord Latimer in the reign of 
Henry vm. ; and the stalk of liquorice with the legend, 
" Dulce meum terra tegit," adopted by Mary, Queen of 
Scotland, after the death of her first husband, Francis n. 
of France. Devices were usually placed either at the 
sides of the shield or below the achievement ; and occa- 
sionally the double arrangement was followed by the 
same person. Thus, Henry vn. of England placed a rose 
"parted per palegrufes 'dud argent" 3 below his escutcheon, 

1 At the battle of Barnet, in 1471, ing the badges so like, shot at the 

" a strange misfortune happened to Earl of Oxford's men that were on 

the Earl of Oxford (John Vere) and their part." Sir Kd. Baker, Chro- 

his men, for they having a star with nicle, p. 211. 

streams (a mullet) on their liveries, 9 . ,. . 

2 Pursuivant of Arms, p. 180. 
as King Edward's men had the sun ; 

and the Earl of Warwick's men, by 3 The red and white roses are 

reason of the mist, not well discern- sometimes borne quarterly, gules and 


in allusion to the union of the Houses of Lancaster and 
York, by his marriage to the heiress of the latter ; and 
also a portcullis with the legend, ' Altera securitas," at 
the side of the shield, to show his maternal descent from 
the family of Beaufort, and to indicate that as the port- 
cullis, the device of the Duke of Somerset (the eldest 
son of John of Gaunt by his third wife), is an additional 
security to the gates or porch of a fortress, so his 
descent through his mother strengthened his title to the 
Crown. 1 Both the parti-coloured rose and the portcullis 
of the House of Tudor are frequently spoken of as 
badges, but we are inclined to think that these, as well 
as many of the other cognizances adopted by the Kings 
and Queens of England, would, in one sense at least, be 
more accurately described as devices, inasmuch as they 
were not used during successive generations. 2 In the case 
of several English families (including the Harringtons, 
the Heneages, the Staffords, the Lacys, and the Dacres), 
the badge consisted of a fret or knot ; and the well- 
known badge of the Hungerfords was made up of a garb 
(derived from the Peverels) and a sickle, united by a 
golden cord. A mulberry tree was embroidered as a 
badge on the housings of Thomas Mowbray, Duke of Nor- 
folk, in allusion to his surname ; and, in like manner, a 

argent, but generally one within the England. (Nisbet's Heraldry, vol. 

other. ii. part iv. p. 25.) See also seal of 

1 The portcullis has been used as a Charles I. (1626), Laing's Catalogue, 

device by the Kings of Scotland since No. 72. 

the marriage of James I. to Jane 2 For an interesting notice of the 

Beaufort, to indicate their maternal Royal badges of England, see Mon- 

descent from the Royal family of tagu's Study of Heraldry, p. 59. 


Daisy was assumed by Margaret of Anjou, Queen of 
Henry vi. 

" The daise a floure white and rede 
In French called la belle Margarete." 1 

Mr. Planche gives an interesting list of badges borne 
by some of the principal nobility in the reign of Edward 
iv., from a contemporary MS. in the English College of 
Arms, in which only two Scottish surnames make their 
appearance, to wit, the Earl of Douglas and Sir Thomas 
Montgomery, who bear, as badges, a human heart and a 
fleur-de-lis respectively, being, in both instances, portions 
of the family arms. It is somewhat strange that the 
buckle of the Pelhams does not occupy a place in the 
list, as it is generally supposed to have been assumed by 
Sir John de Pelharn, 'in commemoration of his concern in 
the capture of the King of France at the battle of Poic- 
tiers. 2 

According to Petra Sancta, the oldest device on record 
is the thistle and relative motto ("Nemo me impune 
lacesset"), borne in the royal, achievement of Scotland, 
the first assumption of which (in common with other 

1 Chaucer. stones, on the turnpikes, and even on 

2 " Throughout the whole of that the backs of the sheep. See Lower's 
part of Eastern Sussex over which Curiosities of Heraldry, p. 146. In 
the Pelham influence extends, there like manner, the flying spur of the 
is no 'household word 'more familiar Johnstones is to be met with, under 
than the Pelham buckle." It occurs as various circumstances, in different 
an appendage to the family arms ; on parts of Dumfriesshire at one time 
the ecclesiastical buildings of which surmounting the steeple of a parish 
they were founders or benefactors ; church, and at another adorning the 
on the ornaments of their various paper wrapper of the gingerbread 
mansion-houses ; on ancient seals ; as for which the town of Moffat is so 
the sign of an inn ; on the chimney- justly celebrated. 

backs of the farm-houses, on the mile- 



writers) he refers to King Achaius, on the occasion of 
his celebrated alliance with the Emperor Charlemagne ! 
The Great Seals of the first four Jameses of Scotland 
have generally been incorrectly regarded as precisely 
similar, whereas certain distinctive marks an annulet, 
a fleur-de-lis, and a trefoil were added by James IL, IIL, 
and iv., respectively j 1 and perhaps these figures may be 
regarded as something of the same character as the 
badges or devices associated with the armorial insignia 
of the English sovereigns. On the privy seal of James 
iv. (1506), we find a mullet above the shield, a mascle 
or lozenge at the dexter side of the crown, and a crescent 
behind the dexter supporter, which is charged with a 
saltire on the loins. 2 Again, on the Great Seal of Queen 
Mary, a crowned thistle is placed behind each of the 
supporters, and the shield surrounded by the collar of 
that Order ; while on that of her son, James VI. (1583), 
a part of the caparisons of the monarch's charger are 
embroidered with the same figure. 3 

On the counter-seal of Walter Stewart, Earl of Atholl 
(1429), is a device resembling a stag " couchant," which, 
as Mr. Laing conjectures, may have been a family badge ; 4 
and we may mention that a somewhat similar figure was 
carried as a badge by Richard II. of England, who 
inherited it from his mother, " The Fair Maid of Kent/' 
the daughter and ultimately sole heiress of Edmund 
Plantagenet. In alluding to certain devices, of which 

1 Laing's Cataloyue, Nos. 45, 46, 3 Ibid. Nos. 59 and 67 ; also Plate 
50, and 5J. xm. fig. 4. 

2 Ibid. No. 53. 4 Ibid. No. 795; also Plate xi. fig. 6. 


the signification was not well known till explanatory 
legends were applied to them, Nisbet specifies "the cal- 
traps" (cheval-traps) of the Earls of Perth, the sala- 
mander of Dundas of that Ilk, and the thistle and rose 
in the royal achievement issuing out of the compartment, 
the well-known devices of Scotland and England, united 
in the person of King James vi. 1 It may certainly be 
questioned, however, whether the figures in the first two 
instances can with propriety be regarded either as badges 
or devices, inasmuch as they are connected with the 
compartment under the escutcheon, to which, we shall 
afterwards refer. As already indicated, very few of the 
baronial families of Scotland appear to have adopted 
any special badges, in the English sense of the term ; 
and when it was necessary to distinguish the persons of 
their servants or followers, the crest or a portion of the 
arms seems to have served the purpose a practice still 
observed by the Duke of Atholl, the Earl of Mansfield, 
Mr. Trotter of Mortonhall, and a few other Scottisli 
families. Among the Highlanders, however, another 
species of badge has, in recent times, constituted a mark 
of clanship, in the shape of a leaf or sprig of a par- 
ticular tree or shrub (usually an evergreen), which is 
carried in the bonnet or other portion of the costume 
the chief being entitled to wear two eagle's feathers in 
his bonnet, in addition to the badge. Thus, the badge 
of the Gordons is ivy, of the Campbells, myrtle, of the 
Buchanans, birch, of the Camerons, oak, of the Grahams, 
laurel, of the Murray s, juniper, of the Robertsons, fern 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part iv. p. 25. 


(or bracken), of the Macdonalds, bell -heath, and of the 
Macgregors, pine. 

" She told me, and turned my chilled heart to a stone, 
The glory and name of Macgregor was gone : 
That the pine which for ages had shed a bright halo, 
Afar on the mountains of Highland Glen-falo, 
Should wither and fall ere the turn of yon moon, 
Smit through by the canker of hated Colquhoun ; 
That a feast on Macgregors each day should be common, 
For years, to the eagles of Lennox and Lomond." 1 

Occasionally, the symbol appears to have been changed, 
and Sir Walter Scott mentions that " the downfall of the 
Stuarts was supposed to be omened by their having 
chosen the oak (in lieu of the thistle ?) for their badge of 
distinction." 2 


Various opinions are entertained by heraldic writers 
respecting the origin of SUPPORTERS, which in Scotland 
were formerly termed Bearers? While some consider 
that at first they were merely a device of the engraver to 
fill the void spaces between the triangular shield and the 
circular border of the seal, others (including Menestrier 
and Nisbet) trace their adoption to certain ceremonies 
performed at tournaments, where the knights, on hanging 

1 Hogg's Queen's Wake, " The Fate 3 In a curious MS. in the possession 
of Macgregor." of Lord Dalhousie, at Brechin Castle, 

See also some curious lines on the badges, mottos, and supporters 
"The M'Gregouris Armes " in the of some of the Scottish nobility are 
Black Book of Taymouth, p. 173. given thus : " The Earle of Mor- 

toun's badge, an boar, under an holin 

2 Lockhart's Life of Scott, Letter to tree, Bearers on every side, an wyld 
Lord Montagu, 24th May 1822. man saying, 'Lock sicker.'" 


up their shields, by way of challenge, placed their pages 
or armour-bearers, grotesquely dressed as wild men, lions, 
dragons, etc., to watch those who might touch the escut- 
cheon ; and it is concluded that these figures, of which 
we have numerous examples in both English and Scottish 
heraldry, were afterwards adopted as armorial supporters. 
Sir George Mackenzie is of opinion that supporters took 
their rise from the solemnities attendant upon the crea- 
tion of the nobility in the olden time, when the person 
about to be invested with any honour was led before the 
sovereign " between two of the quality," in remembrance 
of which occurrence his escutcheon was afterwards sup- 
ported by any two creatures he might feel disposed to 
select. We are inclined to give a preference to the first 
of these conjectures, as indicated by Anstis, in his Aspi- 
logia, in the following terms : " As to supporters, they 
were (I take it) the invention of the graver, who, in 
cutting on seals shields of arms, which were in a trian- 
gular form and placed on a circle, finding a vacant place 
at each side and also at the top of the shield, thought it 
an ornament to fill up the spaces with vine branches, 
garbs, trees, flowers, plants, ears of corn, feathers, fret- 
work, lions, wy verns, or some other animals, according to 
their fancy." 

When supporters are inanimate objects, the escutcheon 
is said to be cotised a term derived from the French 
word cote (a side) in contradistinction to supported. 
A curious example of inanimate supporters occurs on 
the English seal of William, Lord Botreaux (1426), 
where, on each side of a couche shield exhibitino- a 


griffin " segreant " and surmounted by a helmet and 
crest, a buttress is quaintly introduced, in evident 
allusion to the owner's name. 1 A somewhat similar 
arrangement appears on the Scottish seal of William 
Ruthven (1396), where a tree growing from a mount is 
placed on each side of the escutcheon. 2 

The French draw a distinction between supports and 
tenans, of which the former hold the upper portion of 
the shield, while the latter support it from below. Nisbet 
refers to the lozenge on the seal of Margaret, Duchess 
of Burgundy (1384) as being supported by four animals, 
her husband's two supporters (eagles) being placed on 
the two upper sides of the shield, and those of her father 
(two lions " sejant ") on the lower sides. 3 

The position of supporters is very much varied. In 
the case of couche shields, they are frequently so placed 
as to appear to be supporting the helmet and crest ; but 
when the escutcheon is carried erect, they are almost 
always disposed by the sides of it, in accordance with 
our present practice. When only one is introduced, it 
is sometimes placed on the dexter, and sometimes on 
the sinister side of the shield. Sometimes, again, the 

1 Archceological Journal, x. 335. rise and antiquity of the fleur-de-lis 
In his notice of " Reptilia, or of France, has sufficiently refuted that 
creeping things," Nisbet remarks story of the toads." System of Her 'a/- 
that "'the arms of Botreaux in Eng- dry, i. 335. (Seep. 190, note 2, supra.) 
land are argent, three toads erect, 2 Plate xi. fig. 7 ; Laing's Cata- 
sdble. Nicol Upton (he adds), an logue, No. 708; see also Nos. 236, 
English writer about the year 1428, 238, and 294. 

speaking of the Lord Botreaux's arms, 3 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 

says, ' Qme quidem arma olim por- iv. p. 31. See also another curious 

taverunt reges Francorum ; ' but example engraved by Mr. Lower at 

Menestrier, in his chapter on the p. 144 of his Curiosities of Heraldry. 


single supporter is disposed behind the escutcheon, which 
is made to rest against it ; and in a few rare instances, 
it is placed at the bottom of the achievement, being sur- 
mounted by the shield. The same figures are carried 
by several families, " without any ground of offence, 
or concludinsr them to be of one descent or kin :" 1 and 

O * 

this is especially the practice in the case of savages, who 
appear to be very popular in Scottish Heraldry. 

" As two wild men, supporters of a shield, 
Painted, who stare at open space, nor glance 
The one at other, parted by the shield. "2 

Savages occur, either singly or in pairs, in the achieve- 
ments of the Dukes of Atholl, (Douglas), and Roxburgh, 
and in those of the noble families of Sutherland, Morton, 
Perth, Elgin, Strathallan, Elphinstone, Torphichen, Kin- 
naird, and Herries; 3 besides being carried by many old 
barons, including the Irvines of Drum, the Fothering- 
hames of Powrie, the Nisbets of Dean, the Bruces of 
Airth, and the Murray s of Broughton. They are almost 
invariably wreathed with laurel, and frequently carry 
batons, arrows, or branches in one of their hands. 4 

Sometimes the supporters are taken from the figures 
within the escutcheon, as in the case of the Earl of 
Home, Lord Gray, and Dundas of that Ilk, who all bear 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. iv. 33. tournament held by James iv. " in 

2 Tennyson's Idylls, Enid. defence of the savage knight," where 

3 See Plate n. many of the nobility and gentry 

4 Nisbet conjectures that the fre- appeared with their servants in the 
quent use of savages as supporters dress of savages, which became the 
was either in imitation of John, supporters of several families. Sys- 
Seneschal of Kyle (afterwards Ro- tern of Heraldry, vol. ii. part iv. pp. 
bert in.), or in consequence of the 28 and 33. 


lions ill their shields ; while the supporters of Lord 
Forbes are two bears, three " couped " heads of " Master 
Bruin" being the charges in his escutcheon. Besides 
savages and lions, 1 stags, horses, hounds, antelopes, uni- 
corns, and griffins are favourite supporters. The eagle, 
the falcon, and the swan are also in considerable request, 
while men in armour and female figures (both literal and 
allegorical) are very frequent. In a few instances, the 
supporters are allusive to the bearer's surname, as in 
the case of Cuningham, Earl of Glencairn, and Lord 
Oliphant, who respectively carried conies and elephants. 
According to Mackenzie and other authorities, suppor- 
ters are not hereditary, but may be altered at pleasure ; 
" if, however," says Sir George, "cadets keep their chiefs' 
supporters, they use to adject some difference." Thus, 
the Earl of Kellie placed a crescent on the breasts of the 
griffins which he adopted as supporters from the achieve- 
ment of his chief, the Earl of Mar. As an example of 
changed supporters, we may mention the case of the 
Earls of Eglinton, who have carried two dragons (in- 
stead of angels in Dalmatic habits) 2 " ever since they 
came from the House of Seton " an illustration of the 
frequent practice of supporters being taken from the 
achievement of a family connexion. In England, the 

1 Plate xi. fig. 8. Seal of William 2 Two such angels were in later 

(first Lord ?) Seton, 1384. (Laing's times the supporters of the national 

Catalogue, No. 738). Lions also arms of France ; and it is somewhat 

occur as supporters on the seal of strange that, as in the case of the 

George Lord Seton, c. 1440. (CaS.u- charges in their escutcheon (three 

loyue, No. 739.) The supporters fleurs-de-lis), the supporters of the 

ultimately adopted by the family Montgomeries should exhibit an- 

were two mertrixes or foxes. other French analogy. 



supporters of the Royal arms have frequently been 
changed. Edward iv. changed his at least three times ; 
and till the reign of James L, when the lion and the 
unicorn were permanently adopted, the supporters do 
not appear to have been regarded as hereditary. " In 
marshalled arms/' says Nisbet, "the coat which is first 
on the right side is supported by the supporter properly 
belonging to those arms, and those on the left by the 
supporter belonging to them ; but if they have none, 
then, for beauty's sake, the supporter on the right is 
doubled on the left. In subjects' arms, also, impaled or 
quartered, the supporters uphold the arms of the family 
to whom they belong." 1 

On the corbels of Gothic architecture, shields of arms 
are frequently supported by Angefe, which, however, 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part iv. p. 36. 


cannot generally be regarded as heraldic appendages- 
being merely supposed to indicate that the owners have 
contributed to the erection of the fabric. Examples of 
this practice will be found on various ecclesiastical edi- 
fices in Scotland, and among others, at Melrose Abbey, 
St. Giles', Edinburgh, and the church of Seton, in East 
Lothian. An interesting instance of an angel supporting 
a shield occurs on the beautiful seal of Mary of Gueldres, 
Queen of James n. (1459) ; l and the Privy Seal of 
David ii., a hundred years earlier, exhibits a pretty 
design of an escutcheon charged with the ensigns of 
Scotland, and borne by two arms issuing from clouds 
above, indicative of Divine support. 2 According to the 
French heralds, only sovereign princes can use angels as 
heraldic supporters ; but in Scotland they have long been 
so carried by several ancient Houses, including the noble 
families of Lothian, Borthwick, and Saltoun. 

Towards the end of the thirteenth and the beginning 
of the fourteenth century, we have numerous instances 
of Scottish seals exhibiting shields placed between two 
animals usually resembling Lizards the promiscuous 
use of which, apart from other reasons, appears to furnish 
a strong argument against the propriety of regarding 

1 Plate xi. fig. 9; Laing's Cata- with the family. Godsacre, p. 182, 

logue, No. 48. See also Nos. 206, note. 
691, and 692. 

Mrs. Stowe mentions a curious 2 Plate xi. fig. 10 ; Laing's Cata- 

monument of the Bedford family logue, No. 29. At each side of the 

at Chenies, in Buckinghamshire, on King's seated figure, on the counter 

which Cherubim are represented hold- seal of Robert n. (1386), the arms of 

ing aloft the armorial bearings of Scotland are supported from behind 

that noble House, almost as if they by a skeleton, within an embattled 

would give them a lift into heaven buttress. Catalogue, No. 34. 


them as heraldic supporters. No fewer than thirteen 
instances of these lizards occur in Mr. Laing's Catalogue, 
the earliest being on the seal of Kobert Bruce, Earl of 
Carrick (1285), and the latest on that of Sir John Felton, 
Lord of Ochiltree (1333). * In a few cases, besides the 
two animals at the sides, a third animal of the same or a 
different kind is placed above the escutcheon, as on the 
seal of Eeginald Crawford (1292), where the shield is 
surmounted by a fox and placed between two dogs. 2 Of 
these early seals, probably that of William Stirling (1292), 
on which the shield is placed between two lions rampant, 
exhibits the nearest approach to the regular heraldic 
supporters of a later period. 3 

On several Scottish seals of the same era, the shield is 
placed on the breast of a displayed eagle, as on those of 
Alexander Abemethy and Alexander Cumin of Buchan 
(1292), Alexander Stewart, Earl of Menteith (1296), and 
Sir David Lindsay, Lord of Crawford (1345). 4 English 
Heraldry supplies several similar examples, of which we 

1 Plate xii. fig. 1 ; Laing's Cata- Mr. Fraser's Stlrlings of Keir and 
logue, Nos. 140 and 324. See also their Family Papers. 

Nos. 112, 123, 149, 153, 347, 700, 

375, 25, 446, 601, and 611, of which 4 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 80, 223, 

the first six are attached to docu- 785 (Plate xn. fig. 4), and 509. See 

ments dated 1292. also the later seals of Walter Leslie 

2 Plate xn. fig. 2 ; Laing's Cata- (1367) already referred to as one 
loguc, No. 210. See also Nos. 761, of the earliest Scottish examples of 
149, 375, and 601, of which the first quartering (Plate vm. fig. 3) of 
is the seal of John of Strathbogie, Maurice, Lord Drummond (1465), 
EarlofAtholl (1292), exhibiting two and of John Butler (1470). Cata- 
griffins "segreant" at the sides, with logue, Nos. 496, 278, and 147- 

a lion both above and below the The original arms of the Lindsays 

shield. were the same as those of the Norman 

3 Plate xii. fig. 3 ; Laing's Cata- family De Limesay, viz., gules, an 
logue, No. 755. See also p. 14 of eagle displayed, or. Towards the 


may mention the armorial insignia of Richard, Earl of 
Cromwell, brother of Henry in., and of the ancient 
family of Latham, in the fourteenth century. A curious 
instance of a shield placed on the breast of a, Hawk is 
noticed by Hone in his Table Book, viz., the arms of the 
Lord of the Manor of Stoke-Lyne, in the county of 
Oxford. It appears that when Charles 1. held his parlia- 
ment at Oxford, the offer of knighthood was gratefully 
declined by the then Lord of Stoke-Lyne, who merely 
requested, and obtained, the royal permission to place 
the arms of his family upon the breast of a hawk, which 
has ever since been employed in the capacity of sup- 
porter. Sometimes the eagle's breast is charged with 
more than one shield, as in the case of the seals of Mar- 
garet Stewart, Countess of Angus (1366), and Euphemia 
Leslie, Countess of Ross (1394), on both of which three 
escutcheons make their appearance. 1 

The royal arms of Prussia are supported by an eagle 
with two heads, and the same arrangement, as already 
stated, is adopted in marshalling the present bearings of 
the City of Perth. 

The well-known seal of Muriel of Stratherne (1284) 
furnishes a curious example of something approaching to 
a single heraldic supporter. As already stated, it is 
strangely misrepresented and described by Sir George 

close of the thirteenth century they of the escutcheon. See Lives of the 

assumed, in lieu of the eagle, a fess Lindsays, i. 55 ; also Plate iv. 

checquy, argent and azure, probably l Laiug's Catalogue, Nos. 791 and 

in consequence of " close alliance, by 499. See also Plate xn. fig. 5, which 

kindred and interest, with the High represents an earlier impression of 

Steward," the eagle being for a time the seal of the Countess of Ross, from 

retained as the tenant or supporter a charter dated 1381. 


Mackenzie as exhibiting " a shield with one supporter, 
viz., a falcon standing upon the neck of a duck, which 
with the neck lies under the escutcheon, and both shield 
and supporter are within a lozenge" ! 1 In point of fact, 
however, the lozenge is a pure invention, and the shield 
(bearing the two chevrons of Stratherne) is placed above 
a dexter arm " vested," issuing from the sinister side of 
the legend, and holding a falcon by the jesses. 2 

On several of our more ancient seals only one sup- 
porter is represented, and probably the earliest example 
of this arrangement occurs on the curious seal of William, 
first Earl of Douglas (c. 1356), already referred to, where 
the shield is supported from behind by a lion " sejant," 
ivith his head in the helmet, which is surmounted by the 
crest. 3 Very similar designs appear on the seals of An- 
drew Roxburgh (1367), Nicolas Douglas, brother of Sir 
James Douglas, Lord of Dalkeith (1392), and Adam 
Forrester of Corstorphine (1400) the escutcheon, in the 
two latter cases, being supported by the fore-paws of the 
royal beast. 4 On the seals of Margaret Stewart, Coun- 
tess of Angus and Mar (1378), and Isabel Douglas, 
Countess of Mar (1404), a female figure is represented 
holding two upright shields (one in each hand) ; and, in 
the former case, an eagle is placed on the top of each 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxxi. ; 3 Plate x. fig. 2 ; Laing's Catalogue, 
also Plate xm. fig. 8. No. 237- A similar Flemish example 

2 Laing's Catalogue, No. 764; also (1359) is mentioned by Nisbet. 
Plate xm. fig. 7. A falconer on System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part iv. 
horseback, holding a falcon in the p. 31. 

same manner, appears on the early 4 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 705, 259, 

seal of "William, son of John" (c. and 342 (Plate xn. fig. 6). 
1180). Catalogue, No. 844. 



escutcheon, holding the guige in its beak. 1 On the seal 
of Archibald, fourth Earl of Douglas (c. 1418), the shield 
is held, along with a club, in the right hand of a savage 
erect, who bears a helmet in his left ; while on that of 
William, eighth Earl (1446), a kneeling savage holds a 
club in his right hand, and supports a couche shield on 
his left arm. 2 The seal of Sir Thomas Erskine of Brechin 
(1541), exhibits a shield placed in front of a griffin, 
which forms one of Lord Mar's supporters ; and on the 
still later seal of James Sandilands, Lord Torphiohen 
(1603), an upright shield is accompanied by a single 
supporter, viz., a lion on the dexter side. 3 About the 

same date (c. 1600), the armorial shield of Sir James 
Edmonstone of Duntreath is represented on a sculptured 

1 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 792 and 
241 (Plate vn. fig. 12, and Plate xn. 
fig. 7). See also No. 767, the seal 
of Euphemia Stratherne, Countess 
of Moray (1369), exhibiting three 
shields, of which two are couche', 
each being supported on the back of 
a lion, " sejant, gardant ;" and No. 
36, that of Euphemia, Countess of 
Moray, daughter of Hugh Earl of 

Ross, and Queen of Roberb n. ( 1 375), 
on which are two shields bearing 
Scotland and Ross respectively, each 
supported by a lion standing on his 
hind legs. 

2 Plate xn. figs. 8, 9 ; Laing's 
Catalogue, Nos. 242 and 247. 

3 Ibid. Nos. 316 and 718; also 
Plate xni. fig. 1. Nisbet mentions 
that the royal arms of Scotland are 


stone at Duntreath Castle, with its apex resting on the 
hump of a camel the only example of such an arrange- 
ment that we have ever met with. 1 

The only other species of a single supporter to which 
we intend to allude is noticed by Mr. Lower as being 
peculiar to the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, viz., 
where the arms are represented on a banner, the staff of 
which is supported by an animal either in a " rampant" 
or "sejant" posture. As an example, he refers to the 
armorial insignia of Sir Roger Fynes, Treasurer of the 
Household to Henry vi., which are thus represented over 
the great gate of Hurstmonceaux Castle, in Sussex, the 
supporter being an alaunt or wolf-dog. 2 

The seal of David Lindsay, Lord of Crawford (1345), 
already referred to as exhibiting the earliest Scottish 
example of a heraldic crest, also appears to furnish the 
earliest instance of regular supporters, viz., two lions. 3 

supported by only one unicorn, " se- coronet, and not a horse's head, as 

jant," at the outer entrance of Holy- stated in Laing's Catalogue, No. 305. 

rood.- -System of Heraldry, vol. ii. 2 Curiosities of Heraldry, p. 142. 

part iv. p. 30. The stone to which he Two modern examples of a somewhat 

refers is now to be seen in the Chapel. similar arrangement occur at the 

1 The present supporters of the head of the Meadow Walk, Edin- 

Duntreath family are two rampant burgh, where the pillars at the en- 

lions ; but according to Workman's trance are surmounted by two cle- 

MS., quoted by Nisbet (i. 241), the verly cut unicorns, of which the 

supporters of Edmonstone of that dexter holds a small banner bearing 

Ilk, afterwards designed of Ednain, the national arms of Scotland, and 

were two camels proper, and the the sinister another banner charged 

crest a camel's head and neck. The with the ensigns of the metropolis, 

lions appear as supporters on the seal 3 We have already noticed an- 

of Sir William Edmonstone of Dun- other beautiful seal of the same 

treath, Justice-General of Scotland David Lindsay Catalogue, No. 509 

(1470), the crest, however, being a on which the shield is placed 011 

earners head issuing from a ducal an eagle's breast. 


The earliest example in Mr. LaingV Catalogue (No. 311) 
is the seal of Sir Thomas Erskine (1364), the supporters 
being two griffins Nisbet refers to a seal of John, 
Seneschal of Kyle (afterwards Robert in.), appended to 
a charter of the same date, in favour of the Burgh of 
Glasgow. "The shield," he says, " was couche, and sup- 
ported by two savages, as by the abstracts of the charter 
in the Scots College of Paris ;" * and this is probably 
the seal noticed in Mr. Laing's Catalogue (No. 782), as 
appended to another deed, dated 1369. Fifteen other early 
examples of escutcheons with two regular supporters are 
furnished by the same Catalogue, the earliest being the 
seal of Thomas, thirteenth Earl of Mar (1368) two 
demi lions, and the latest that of Sir William Cuning- 
ham of Kilmaurs (1398) two lions " sejant, gardant, 
coue." 2 In ten of the other thirteen instances, the sup- 
porters consist of savages (whole or demi) and lions in 
various attitudes. 3 In two cases, they are animals 
" with the body and legs of a lion, and the head and 
face of a woman ;" and in one instance, demi figures of 
aged men "vested/' 4 In the earlier portion of the 
fifteenth century, two lions appear as supporters on 
the seal of AVilliam Chalmers (1404) ; two angels with 
expanded wings on that of Archibald Douglas, fourth 
Earl of Wigton (1423) ; and two savages on that of 
Archibald, fifth Earl of Douglas (1425). 5 On the still 
later seal of Colin Campbell, third Earl of Argyll 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 3 Ibid. Nos. 312, 257, 239, 294, 
iv. p. 31. 240, 351, 1241, 738, 787, and 602. 

2 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 566 and 4 Ibid. Nos. 511, 512, and 568. 
1215. 5 Ibid. Nos. 168, 244 and 245. 



(1513), two small rampant lions, on the top of the 
helmet, support the crest a boar's head and neck 
" couped." 1 

The earliest Scottish example of royal supporters 
is furnished by the fine Privy Seal of James I. (1429), 
on which the escutcheon is placed between two lions 
" rampant, coue, gardant," which also appear on the 
Privy Seal of James n. (1442), the sinister lion being- 
there surmounted by a saltire on the haunches. 2 Mr. 
Laing mentions in his preface (p. xvi.) that the uni- 
corns do not make their appearance before the reign 
of Queen Mary, on whose first Great Seal (c. 1550) they 
are represented as chained and gorged with crowns. 3 
A remarkably fine example, however, of the unicorns 
occurs on a large tablet, in high relief (with the date 
1505), on the westmost buttress of Melrose Abbey, 
of which a very accurate and detailed account is given 
by Dr. J. A. Smith in his " Notes on Melrose Abbey." 4 

1 Laing's Catalogue, No. 155; also be the Indian rhinoceros, or if its 
Plate xin. fig. 2. origin be wholly fabulous, is not dis- 

2 Ibid. Nos. 43 and 47 ; also tiuctly known. Two kinds of uni- 
Plate xin. fig. 3. corn are to be met with on the sculp- 

3 Ibid. No. 59 ; also Plate xin. tures aurl in the writings of the 
fig. 4. ancients, viz., the bull-unicorn, and 

4 Proceedings of the Society of the horse unicorn. Of the former, a 
Antiquaries of Scotland, ii. 171. well-preserved example occurs on 

Another lapidarian example of the the Nimroud Obelisk in the British 
unicorns (temp. Jac. v.) is figured and Museum, and a more modern instance 
described by Mr. J. C. R-oger, in his on the Forteviot sculpture at Free- 
" Notices of Sculptured Fragments land House. The Rev. J. Campbell, 
formerly in the Episcopal Palace, author of Travels in South Africa, 
Glasgow," at p. 317 of the same mentions that the Hottentots brought 
volume. Speaking of the unicorn, him a head with ' a straight horu 
he says, " Whether, as has been sup- projecting three feet from the fore- 
posed, the original type of this figure head, about ten inches above the tip 



In this instance, the disposition of the supporters is 
somewhat unusual. Their left forelegs are extended up 
the sides of the escutcheon, while the right legs, with the 
knees meeting in the middle, support it below, the feet 
being bent back to the body. Above the heads and out- 
side the horns of the unicorns, the letter "I" is repre- 
sented on the dexter, and the- ancient form of the figure 
" four" on the sinister side, indicative of James iv. ; 
while across the base of the tablet, the date is boldly cut 

in ornamental letters " Anno Dni 1505." Perhaps the 
earliest authentic occurrence of the national supporter 

of Scotland in connexion with the royal arms is on the 
gold coinage of James in. (1460-88), where a single uni- 

of the nose.' This specimen, since 
deposited in the Museum of the Lon- 
don Missionary Society, Mr. Camp- 
bell informs us 'is considered by 
naturalists the same that is de- 
scribed in Job xxxix.' It is stated 
by Mr. Willement in his Regal Her- 
aldry (p. 70), in reference to the 
insignia of Queen Jane Seymour, that 
her arms were supported on the sini- 

ster by the unicorn, a figure which, 
according to that author, had main- 
tained its place in the achievement of 
the Dukes of Somerset ; and again of 
the arms of this queen, in another ex- 
ample, that the animal occurs argent, 
royally croivned. The title of Somerset 
appears to have been held by the Beau- 
fort family from about the year 1396 
to 1471, when Edmund Beaufort, the 


corn is represented, in a sitting posture, behind the escut- 
cheon, to which it is attached by a chain and ring. 1 

The COMPARTMENT a term peculiar to Scottish He- 
raldry is a kind of carved panel, of no fixed form, 
placed below the escutcheon, bearing the supporters, and 
usually inscribed with a motto or the name and designa- 
tion of the owner. It does not appear to be a very 
ancient heraldic appendage, and was probably found to 
be a convenient arrangement when shields were earned 
erect instead of couche, so as to supply a resting-place 
(or stand-point) for the supporters. In a few instances, 
the compartment appears on seals with couche shields, 
on which, however, the supporters are usually represented 
as resting on the sides of the escutcheon, and bearing up 
the helmet and crest, as already mentioned. Sir George 
Mackenzie conjectures that the compartment "represents 
the bearer's land and territories, though sometimes (he 
adds) it is bestowed in recompense of some honourable 
action." 2 Thus, the Earls of Douglas are said to have 
obtained the privilege of placing their supporters within a 
pale of wood wreathed, because the doughty Lord, in the 
reign of King Robert the Bruce, defeated the English in 
Jedburgh Forest, and " caused wreathe and impale," 

last Duke of that surname, was be- say. If they were, it suggests a 

headed. The title of Duke of Somerset possible explanation of the occur- 

would appear afterwards, with some rence of this figure in the royal in- 

interruption,tohavebeenconferredon signia of Scotland." 

Edward Seymour, who died in 1551. l These coins were termed " uni- 

James I. of Scotland married Joan corns" and "half-unicorns,'* according 

Beaufort, daughter of John Earl of to their weight. See Lindsay's Coln- 

Somerset ; but whether the families aye of Scotland, pp. 135-137, and 

of Beaufort and Seymour were in Plate 13, fig. 22-27. 

anywise connected, I am unable to 2 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxxi. 


during the night, that part of the wood by which he 
conjectured they might make their escape. Such a 
fenced compartment appears on the seal of James Dou- 
glas, second Earl of Angus, " Dominus de Abernethie 
et Jed worth Forest" (1434), 1 on that of George Douglas, 
fourth Earl (1459), and also on those of several of his 
successors in the earldom (15 11-1 6 1 1 /). 2 A still earlier 
example, however, of a compartment " representing a 
park- with trees, etc., enclosed by a wattled fence," occurs 
on the seal of Walter Stewart, Earl of Atholl (c. 1430), 
where the escutcheon is placed in the entrance to the 
park between two trees. 3 Nisbet refers to a seal of 
William, first Earl of Douglas (1377), exhibiting a single 
supporter (a lion) " sitting on a compartment like to a 
rising ground, with a tree growing out of it, and seme 
of hearts, mullets, and cross-crosslets," these being the 
charges of Douglas and Mar in the escutcheon. 4 

According to Sir George Mackenzie, these compartments 
were usually allowed only to sovereign princes ; and he 
further informs us that, besides the Douglases, he knows 
of no other subject in Britain, except the Earl of Perth, 
whose arms stand upon a compartment. In the case of 
the Perth family, the compartment consists of a green 
hill or mount, seme of caltraps (or cheval-traps), 5 with 

1 Nisbet's Heraldry, vol. ii. part iv. seal as No. 238 in Mr. Laing's Cata- 
p. 134. logue. 

2 Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 250-255. 8 Plate XTV. fig. 1. The caltrap 

3 Ibid. No. 794 ; also Plate ix. was an instrument thrown on the 
fig. 2. ground to injure the feet of horses, 

4 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part and consisted of four iron spikes, of 
iv. p. 134. This is perhaps the same which one always pointed upwards. 


the relative motto, " Gang Warily," above the achieve- 
ment. " Albeit of late," says Mackenzie, " compartments 
are become more common, and some families in Scotland 
have some creatures upon which their achievements 
stand, as the Laird of Dundas, whose achievement has 
for many hundreds of years stood upon a salamander in 
flames, proper, (a device of the Kings of France ;) and 
Robertson of Struan has a monstrous man lying under 
the escutcheon chained, which was given him for his 
taking the murderer of James I." * Such figures, how- 
ever, as Nisbet remarks, cannot properly be called com- 
partments, having rather the character of devices ; while, 
in the case of the Struan achievement, the chained man 
would be more accurately described as " an honourable 
supporter." Sir George Mackenzie engraves " the coat 
of Denham of ould," viz., a stag's head " caboshed," 
below a shield couche charged with three lozenges, or 
fusils, conjoined in bend. 2 In like manner, Nisbet repre- 
sents the crest and motto of the Scotts of Thirlstane, " by 
way of compartment," below the escutcheon of Lord 
Napier, and a blazing star, with the legend, " Luceo 
boreale," under that of Captain Robert Seton, of the family 
of Meld rum ; 3 while in the case of the illumination which 
accompanies the latest entry in the first volume of the 
Lyon Register (1804), relative to the arms of John Hep 
burn Belshes of Inverrnay, the trunk of an oak-tree 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxxi. 3 System of Heraldry, vol. i. plate 
See Plate xiv. figs. 2, 3. 3, fig. 9, and plate 15, fig. 5. 

2 Plate xiv. fig. 4. See also Laing's See also Plate xiv. fig. 5, in this 

*, Nos. 479 and 490. volume. 


sprouting forth anew is placed on a compartment under 
the shield, with the motto, " Revireseit." 

A curious heraldic arrangement occurs on the seal of 
Dougal Campbell of Corvorane, representative of the 
Campbells of Craignish, appended to a charter dated 
1528 an escutcheon, " gyronny of eight," being sus- 
pended from a lymphad or galley (frequently quartered 
with the gyrons), and surrounded by a legend in the 
" old Irish character." l 

Two other instances of regular compartments are men- 
tioned by Nisbet, viz., those carried by the Macfarlanes 
of that Ilk and the Ogilvies of Innerquharity. The 
former consists of a wavy representation of Loch Sloy, 
the gathering-place of the clan, which word is also in- 
scribed on the compartment as their cri de guerre or 
slogan; while the latter is a "green hill or rising terrace," 
on which are placed two serpents, " nowed," spouting 
fire, and the motto, " Terrena pericula sperno." 5 

English Heraldry furnishes no examples of these spe- 
cial compartments ; but they appear to have been occa- 
sionally used in the achievements of the sovereigns and 
a few of the more distinguished families of France. 3 

Instead of using supporters, the former practice in 
Scotland was for widows (and occasionally married 
women) to surround their shields with a knotted cord 
of their colours, called by the French a CORDELIERE, to 
show, according to Nisbet, that they have corps delie, 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. i. p. 33, 2 Ibid. vol. ii. part iv. p. 134, and 

and plate 6, lig. 4 ; also Plate xiv. vol. i. plate 8, fig. 1 2. 
fig. 6, in this volume. 3 L' Art Hcraldiyue, par M. Baron. 


that is, " a body free and untied " ! l The institution of 
the figure has been attributed to Anne of Bretagne, 
widow of Charles vm. of France, " who, instead of the 
military belt or collar, bestowed a cordon on several 
ladies, admonishing them to live chastely and devoutly, 
always mindful of the cords and bonds of our Saviour 
Jesus Christ ; and to engage them to a greater esteem 
thereof, she surrounded her escutcheon of arms with the 
like cordon." 5 According to others, it was first adopted 
in veneration of St. Francis, patron of the Cordeliers (or 
Grey Friars), and several prelates of the Order of St. 
Francis still surround their arms with the cordeliere. 3 
Accordingly, it is somewhat singular that the figure 
should be used by churchmen as -well as ladies, to both of 
whom, as we have already stated, the privilege of bearing 
crests and mottos is denied. The cordeliere appears to 
have been rarely used in England, where, however, it is 
still occasionally painted upon funeral achievements. 

The Love Knot, or LACS D'AMOUR a figure very 
similar to the cordeliere appears to have been the 
characteristic mark of unmarried gentlewomen ; but it 
must be acknowledged that some writers on Heraldry, 
including Sir George Mackenzie, use the two terms 
without any apparent distinction. Prior to the adoption 
of these v devices, the armorial coats of both sexes were 
frequently surrounded by garlands of leaves and flowers, 
called " Stemmata," of which many examples, according 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part p. 126. 

iv. p. 130. See also p. 145. 3 Nisbet's System of Heraldry, 

2 Askmole's Order of the Garter, vol. ii. part iv. pp. 60 and 1 30. 


to Nisbet, are to be found on old paintings and in illu- 
minated books of arms. He refers to an instance of tin's 
arrangement at Redhouse, in East Lothian, the bearings 
in the relative escutcheon being those of the surname of 
Laing. 1 Another example occurs on the sculptured tablet, 
exhibiting the arms of Mary of Lorraine (1560), which 
formerly occupied the front of her residence at the 
corner of Quality Wynd, Leith. 2 

Two instances of the cordeliere are furnished by Mr. 
La ing's Catalogue. The one appears upon the seal of 
Margaret, Duchess of Chatelherault (1560), in the lifetime 
of her husband, " where a cordeliere of four knots," 
issuing from behind the shield, surrounds its base ; while 
the other is on the pretty* signet of Henrietta Maria, 
widow of Charles i. (1651), whose escutcheon is sur- 
rounded by a " border of love knots." 3 A third ex 
ample occurs in connexion with the lozenge exhibiting 
the arms of Anne, Duchess of Buccleuch, widow of the 
Duke of Monmouth, on one of the curious set of playing 
cards (1691) already referred to. 4 In like manner, in a 
recent volume of the Lyon Register, 5 the arms of Mrs. 
Mary Chisholm, spouse of James Gooden, Esquire, and 
" the only issue of the late Alexander Chisholm of Chis- 
holm, in the shires of Inverness and Ross," consisting of 
a boar's head " couped," are illuminated on a fusil or 
lozenge, which is suspended from a sort of cordeliere. 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 3 Plate xm. figs. 5, 6. Laing's 
iv. p. 130. Catalogue, Nos. 406 and 76. 

2 Robertson's Antiquities of Leith, 

4 Plate xiv. fig. 8. 
p. 31, and plate i. See also Plate 

xiv. fig. 7, in this volume. 5 Vol. iii. p. 54; 1827. 



In addition to seals, Nisbet regards, as of considerable 
authority, ancient manuscripts and illuminated boohs of 
blazons, several of which he enumerates as the sources 
of much heraldic information relative to Scotland, in- 
cluding the collections of Workman, Pont, Esplin, and 
Sir James Balfour, to which he repeatedly refers. Be- 
sides these valuable manuscripts, many others are fortu- 
nately still in existence. Some of the most important 
are preserved in the Advocates' Library, the Lyon 
Office, and the British Museum ; while others are to be 
found in various private collections, including those of 
Dr. Wellesley of New Inn Hall, Oxford, Mr. Scott 
Plummer of Middlestead, and Mr. Laing of the Signet 
Library. Several curious Scotch heraldic manuscripts 
were dispersed, a few years ago, at the sales of the 
collections belonging to Mr. Deuchar, Seal Engraver, 
Edinburgh, and Mr. W. B. Turnbull, Advocate, now of 
the English Bar ; and it is very much to be regretted 
that such documents should find their way to any other 
destination than the Lyon Office. 1 

1 When the sixth Duke of Norfolk, the principal Barons and Knights 
at the request of Evelyn (Diary, 29th of England, supposed to have been 
August 1678), bestowed the Arun- compiled about the year 1240 the 
delian Library on the Royal Society, original having unfortunately disap- 
he stipulated that the books and peared. The well-known Roll of 
documents relatiug to heraldry and Caerlaverock, published by Sir Harris 
genealogy should be deposited in the Nicolas, is another very curious ex- 
College of Arms. ample. It consists of a heraldic 

Some very interesting light is poem, in Norman -French, recording 

thrown upon English heraldry by the names and arms of the Knights 

ancient Rolls of A rms. The earliest who accompanied Edward i. to the 

of these appears to be a copy made, memorable siege of Caerlaverock 

in 1586, by Robert Glover, Somerset castle, in the year 1300. Copies of 

Herald, of a Roll of the bearings of other Rolls of Arms of the time of 


Besides plate, pictures, and other "moveables," churches, 
castles, and monuments frequently afford very interest- 
ing illustrations of ancient armorial ensigns. The most 
cursory examination of the admirable engravings in Mr. 
Billings' Baronial and Ecclesiastical Antiquities of 
Scotland will show that the mouldering edifices of our 
northern kingdom are by no means destitute of heraldic 
decoration. As examples, we may mention the cathedral 
of Glasgow ; the abbeys of Paisley and Lincluden ; the 
churches of Corstorphine, Midcalder, Douglas, and St. 
Monance ; and more especially, the castles of Huntly, 
Fraser, Craigievar, Fy vie, Crathes, Glammis, Kellie, Win- 
ton, and Caerlaverock. These lapidarian records con- 
stitute a most important addition to the comparatively 
meagre array of early heraldic illustrations, and are well 
worthy of being preserved by means of accurate drawings 
or photographs. Had some such preservation been at- 
tempted, during the last 200 years, in the case of those 
churches and castles of which hardly a vestige now 
remains, and also in the case of the countless sepulchral 
monuments, which have been either entirely destroyed 
by (in) human hands or effaced by the gradual influences 
of time, how much valuable heraldic information might 
have been available which is now irrevocably lost ! 
Even at the eleventh hour, however, much may yet be 
done ; and a skilful artist, with a limited knowledge of 
blazonry, would find ample scope for his talents in the 
field which we have indicated. 

E<lward in. and Richard IT. have Willement. (See Montagu's Guide to 
been edited by Mr. R. Mores and Mr. the Study of Heraldry, pp. 26, et seq.) 



PROBABLY one of the most delicate and touchy 
points in Scottish heraldry is involved in the question 
relative to the right to bear supporters. The practice 
of granting these armorial appendages appears to have 
commenced about the middle of last century, and to 
have become very frequent during the time of Mr. 
James Home, who held the office of Lyon Depute from 
1796 to 1819. l Great irregularities unquestionably 
occurred in consequence of the discretionary exercise of 
this power, which is certainly not conferred on the 
authorities of the Lyon Office either by the Act of 
1592, or by the later Statute of 1672. By the Act 
1662, c. 53, it is provided " that all such who, according 
to the addition of their honours, are to receive additions 
to their coats of arms, that they receive the same from 
the Lyon ; and whoever shall offer to assume any ad- 
dition without his approbation, they are to be punished 
according to the Acts of Parliament made against the 
bearers of false arms." It is quite evident that the term 
" addition " is not here intended to be used as synony- 
mous with mark of difference, and in all probability it 

1 Report on the Lyon Court, 1822, p. 9. 


refers to supporters and other exterior decorations ; but 
it is unnecessary to speculate on the meaning of the 
clause, as the Statute in question was repealed the year 
after its enactment. 

We have already seen that the position of the Lord 
Lyon is altogether different from that of the English 
Kings of Arms, inasmuch as he has no superior, like the 
Earl Marshal, to control or to interfere with his official 
proceedings ; and perhaps this circumstance may have 
induced some authors to conclude that, in all armorial 
matters, his power is absolute and unlimited. With 
reference to supporters, there can be no doubt that, of 
his own authority, the Lord Lyon may grant these 
exterior ornaments to all who are entitled to obtain 
them by the heraldic practice of Scotland ; and, more- 
over, that in certain special cases, as that of the 
family of Abbotsford, he may even transgress the esta- 
blished rules of the noble science. But these cases must 
indeed be very special; and the attendant circumstances 
ought to be of so peculiar a character, as to place the 
propriety of conferring the privilege in question beyond 
the challenge of the most critical herald. Had this 
principle always been acted on, the reputation of the 
Lyon Office would not have been so repeatedly assailed ; 
and the bearing of the coveted distinctions would have 
been esteemed more honourable than it has been. No 
express mention of supporters is made in any of the 
Statutes relative to the jurisdiction of the Lord Lyon, 
but there can be no doubt that they are embraced 
within the general term " armorial bearings," or at least 


that they form a part of what is usually called a heraldic 
achievement. The Act of 1672 recognises the power of 
the Lyon " to give arms to virtuous and well-deserving 
persons ;" and, by the commission of the present Lord 
Lyon, he is invested with "nostram plenariam potestatem 
libertatem licentiam et auctoritatem insignia armoria per- 
sonis virtute praeditis et de nobis bene merentibus juxta 
ordines et constitutiones eatenus prascriptas dandi et 
concedendi," etc. It by no means follows, however, that 
in virtue of these provisions the Lord Lyon can, of his 
own authority, grant supporters an armorial distinc 
tion of the highest order to any " virtuous or well- 
deserving person," as a mere matter of favour. Such a 
prerogative can only be exercised by the Sovereign, as 
the Fountain of Honour, from whom the Lord Lyon 
himself receives his appointment. 

There can be no doubt, however, that, although the 
authorities of the Lyon Office do not enjoy the privilege 
of making discretionary grants of supporters, they are 
fully entitled to decide whether or not a claimant of 
these honourable distinctions has a right to bear them 
according to the heraldic usage of Scotland. From the 
deposition of Mr. Tait, which has been already quoted, 
we learn that, since his appointment to the office of 
Lyon Depute, " several applications have been made 
for authority to bear supporters, but such authority has 
not hitherto been granted by him in any case, none of 
the parties applying having, in his opinion, established 
their right to obtain such authority ;" and again, "with 
respect to the right of bearing supporters, this, the 


deponent conceives competent to be granted in very 
few cases, . . . and he will furnish the Commissioners 
with a statement of what he considers to be the rule- 
applicable to this case." That statement forms No. 7 of 
the Appendix to the latest Report on the Lyon Court, 
and is here introduced as being consistent, at least in 
most respects, with the opinions of our leading heraldic 

" NOTE of Persons who are considered by GEORGE TAIT, 
Esquire, Lyon-Depute, to be entitled to Supporters, 
furnished to the Commissioners of Inquiry by their 
desire, intimated to him at his examination this 
day, 27th June 1821. 

" 1. Peers. By immemorial usage, Peers have right 
to supporters, and supporters are commonly inserted in 
modern patents of peerage. This includes Peeresses in 
their own right. 

" 2. Ancient usage. Those private gentlemen, and 
the lawful heirs-male of their bodies, who can prove im- 
memorial usage of carrying supporters, or a usage very 
ancient, and long prior to the Act 1672, are entitled to 
have their supporters recognised, it being presumed that 
they received them from lawful authority, on account of 
feats of valour in battle or in tournaments, or as marks 
of the royal favour. (See Murray of Touchadam's case, 
24th June 1778.) 

" 3. Barons. Lawful heirs-male of the bodies of the 
smaller Barons, who had the full right of free barony 
(not mere freeholders) prior to 1587, when representa- 


tion of the minor Barons was fully established, upon the 
ground that those persons were Barons, and sat in Par- 
liament as such, and were of the same order as the titled 
Barons. Their right is recognised by the writers on 
heraldry and antiquities. Persons having right on this 
ground, will almost always have established it by ancient 
usage, and the want of usage is a strong presumption 
against the right. 

" 4. Chiefs. Lawful heirs-male of Chiefs of tribes or 
clans which had attained power, and extensive terri- 
tories and numerous members at a distant period, or at 
least of tribes consisting of numerous families of some 
degree of rank and consideration. Such persons will 
generally have right to supporters, either as Barons (great 
or small) or by ancient usage. When any new claim is 
set up on such a ground, it may be viewed with sus- 
picion, and it will be extremely difficult to establish it, 
chiefly from the present state of society, by which the 
traces of clanship, or the patriarchal state, are in most 
parts of the country almost obliterated ; and indeed it is 
very difficult to conceive a case in which a new claim of 
that kind could be admitted. Mr. Tait has had some 
such claims, and has rejected them. 

" 5. Royal Commissions. Knights of the Garter and 
Bath, and any others to whom the King may think 
proper to concede the honour of supporters. 

" These are the only descriptions of persons who appear 
to Mr. Tait to be entitled to supporters. 

" An idea has gone abroad, that Scots Baronets are 
entitled to supporters ; but there is no authority for this 


in their patents, or any good authority for it elsewhere. 
And for many years subsequent to 1672, a very small 
portion indeed of their arms which are matriculated in 
the Lyon Register, are matriculated with supporters ; 
so small as necessarily to lead to this inference, that 
those whose arms are entered with supporters had right 
to them on other grounds, e.g., ancient usage, chief- 
tainship, or being heirs of Barons. The arms of few 
Scots Baronets are matriculated during the last fifty or 
sixty years ; but the practice of assigning supporters 
gradually gained ground during that time, or rather the 
practice of assigning supporters to them, -merely as such, 
seems to have arisen during that period ; and it appears 
to Mr. Tait to be an erroneous practice, which he would 
not be warranted in following. 

" British Baronets have also, by recent practice, had 
supporters assigned to them, but Mr. Tait considers the 
practice to be unwarranted ; and accordingly, in a recent 
case, a gentleman, upon being created a Baronet, applied 
for supporters to the King, having applied to Mr. 
Tait, and been informed by him that he did not con- 
ceive the Lord Lyon entitled to give supporters to 
British Baronets. 

" No females (except Peeresses in their own right) 
are entitled to supporters, as the representation of fami- 
lies is only in the male line. But the widows of Peers, 
by courtesy, carry their arms and supporters ; and the 
sons of Peers, using the lower titles of the peerage by 
courtesy, also carry the supporters by courtesy. 

" Mr. Tait does not know of any authority for the 


Lord Lyoii having a discretionary power of granting 
supporters, and understands that only the King has such 
a power. 

" Humbly submitted by 

(Signed) G. TAIT." 

The right of Peers to use supporters seems to be 
universally admitted, but it is somewhat doubtful 
whether the sons of noblemen, " using the lower titles 
of the Peerage by courtesy," are legally entitled to carry 
these heraldic appendages. The following passage from 
Nisbet seems to decide against the privilege, at least in 
the case of younger sons, although he evidently con- 
siders the practice rather anomalous, and even expresses 
an individual opinion which is contrary to the gene- 
ral rule : "The tight of using supporters,' 5 he says, 
" is hereditary with us in the lineal heirs and represen- 
tatives of families ; but not to the younger sons of 
collaterals, unless they become representatives of the 
family : neither in the greater or lesser nobility, which 
in the first seems strange, since the younger sons of 
Dukes and Marquises have the title of Lord prefixed to 
their names, and take precedency of hereditary Lords of 
Parliament. But though the titles they have be only 
temporary, and do not descend to their posterity, yet I 
am of opinion they may use supporters by the same 
right that Knights-bannerets did, whose dignity was also 
temporary, and that with their marks of cadency upon 
them, if agreeable, and if not, with other additional 
figures : for the same reason that thev now of late 

o / 


place the coronets of the respective dignities of their 
fathers on their helmets" (a very questionable proceeding), 
" to show the eminency of their birth." 1 It would appear 
that supporters are very generally assumed, not only by 
the heirs-apparent, but also by all the younger sons of 
Peers, to whom the prefix of " Lord " is allowed by 
courtesy. Among Nisbet's numerous plates of achieve- 
ments, however, while we find the shield of the Hasten 
of Cathcart supported by two parrots, each charged, like 
the escutcheon, with a label, as a mark of difference, 2 
no supporters appear in any of his engravings of the 
arms of younger sons of noblemen, which include the 
bearings of Lords Alexander and William Hay, and 
Lord Charles Ker. 3 The question seems to have been 
brought under the notice of Sir Isaac Heard, Garter 
King of Arms, by a Scottish nobleman towards the 
beginning of the present century. In the year 1807, 
the twelfth Earl of Eglinton communicated with the 
Garter King respecting the right of his son and 
daughter-in-law, Lord and Lady Montgomerie, to bear 
the family supporters ; and the precise nature of the 
application will fully appear from the subjoined reply of 
his heraldic majesty : 

15th April 1807. 

" MY LORD, I had yesterday the honour of receiving 
your Lordship's letter of the llth inst., in which you 
desire my opinion whether Lord Montgomerie may 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 2 Ibid. vol. i. plate 14. 

iv. p. 33. 3 Ibid. vol. i. plates 11, 15, 16. 


properly bear the supporters of the Earls of Eglinton, 
either as heir-apparent to the earldom, or in right of 
Lady Montgomerie, his wife, the eldest daughter and 
co-heir of Archibald, late Earl of Eglinton ; and your 
Lordship adverts to the circumstance, that the said late 
Earl's father had acquired, by purchase, a considerable 
real estate, which having been entailed upon his heirs- 
female, devolved, upon the death of the late Earl, to 
the present Lady Montgomerie. I have the honour to 
observe, in reply, that according to the law and usage in 
England in that respect, Lady Montgomerie cannot pro- 
perly bear the supporters of her late noble father, the 
same being annexed to the earldom ; nor could I, as 
Garter King of Arms, exemplify those supporters to 
Lord Montgomerie during your Lordship's life. In all 
patents of supporters, the grant is to the person bearing 
the title, and to those to whom the honour shall descend, 
according to the letters-patent of creation. Supporters 
are, therefore, a personal distinction, and I should pre- 
sume that the same rule must obtain in Scotland. 

" The circumstance of the inheritance of real estates 
by Lady Montgomerie, to which your Lordship alludes, 
does not constitute any exception to the above general 
rule. I should mention, however, that in cases of 
dignities in fee, descendible to heirs-general, the lady 
on whom such a dignity devolves may bear the sup- 
porters annexed to the same. 

"Your Lordship having included the arms in your 
question, I beg to add, that the family arms of the late 
Earl of Eglinton should be borne on an escutcheon of 


pretence in the armorial achievement of Lord and Lady 

" I shall always have a pleasure in rendering the best 
attention in my power to any of your Lordship's com- 
mands. I have the honor to be, etc. etc. 

" ISAAC HEARD, Garter? 


Notwithstanding this very decided opinion, Lord 
Eglinton appears to have given way on the urgent re- 
monstrance of his son ; and the full Eglinton arms were 
even allowed to be used by Lord Montgomerie's widow 
after his death, which occurred before that of his father. 
On Lady Montgomerie's second marriage, however, 
Lord Eglinton considered it to be liis duty again to 
interfere in the matter, and in the year 1815, we find 
him in communication with his London solicitor, firmly, 
but most delicately, insisting on the discontinued use of 
the Eglinton arms by Lady Montgomerie. 

The question as to the right of lesser Barons to sup- 
porters occurs in the very first of our heraldic cases, for 
a report of which we are indebted to Lord Fountainhall. 2 
In the year 1673, certain "Barons and Gentlemen," in- 
cluding the Lairds of Dundas, Hatton, and Polmaise, 
appear to have " intended" a process against the Lyon, 
to have it " found and declared that he had done wrong 
in refusing to give them forth their coats-of-arms with 
supporters, whereof they and their predecessors had been 

1 Fraser's Memorials of the Mont- 2 Sundry Barons v. The Lord Lyon, 

gomeries (privately printed), vol. i. June 1673 ; Brown's Supplement, vol. 
p. 377. iii. 1>. 6. 


in possession past all memory, and never quarrelled till 
now." In answer to an allegation of the Lyon that, by 
an express letter of the King, " none under the dignity 
of a Lord must use supporters," l they are said to have 
pleaded that " Lords at the beginning were only Barons ;" 
and they also denied that any of their privileges were 
affected by the Act of 1587, which only dispensed with 
their attendance in Parliament. The result of this curious 
case does not appear to be recorded, but there can be no 
doubt that the right to use supporters has long been 
ceded to the representatives of minor Barons, as well as 
to Chiefs of families, in accordance with the opinion of 
Sir George Mackenzie. " I crave liberty to assert," he 
says, " that all our Chiefs of families and old Barons in 
Scotland may use supporters ; for besides that to be a 
chief was of old, and is still reputed an honour, though 
it be adorned with no mark of nobility ; yet these chiefs 
have prescribed a right to use supporters, and that such 
a right may be prescribed, I have proved formerly ; and 
what warrant is for most of our rules in Heraldry, but in 
aged custom ? and that they have constantly used sup- 
porters past all memory of man, even when they were 
knights, is clear from many hundred (?) instances. Thus 
the (Halyburtons) Lairds of Pitcur did, and do use two 
wild cats for their supporters ; Fotheringham of Powry, 
two naked men ; Irvine of Drum, two savages wreathed 
about head and loins with holly, and bearing batons in 

1 The following note here occurs them now to some who were in poa- 
in the margin of Lord Fountainhall's session of them of old." 
MS. : " He (i.e., the Lyon) grants 


their hands ; Moncrieff of that Ilk, two men armed at all 
points, bearing pikes on their shoulders : And many of 
our noblemen have only retained the supporters which 
they formerly had ; and that of old Barons might use 
supporters de jure, seems most certain, for they were 
members of Parliament with us, as such, and never lost 
that privilege, though, for their conveniency, they were 
allowed to be represented by two of their number (in 
each shire), and therefore such as were Barons before 
that time (i.e., 1587) may have supporters as well as 
Lord Barons ; nor should we be governed in this by the 
custom of England, seeing there is dispar ratio, and this 
is now allowed by the Lyon to such." l 

Besides the four families specified by Sir George Mac- 
kenzie, Nisbet 2 mentions the following as bearing sup- 
porters, in the capacity of Chiefs of clans or representa- 
tives of ancient Barons, their use of these appendages 
being " instructed" by seals, old books of blazons, and 
sculptures on edifices and tombs : The Homes of Wed- 
derburn, the Kirkpatricks of Closeburn, the Murrays of 
T.ouchadam and Polmaise, the Maxwells of Polloc, the 
Dunbars of Westfield, the Farquharsons of Invercauld, 
the Edgars of Wadderly, the Nisbets of Dean, 3 the Haigs 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxxi. of the name in Scotland "that has 

2 e * f IT 77 right, by consent, to represent the 
* System of Heraldry, vol. 11. part . . .. , . 

., old original family of the name of 

Nisbet ; since the only lineal male 

3 The worthy herald justifies the representer (the author of this Sys- 
use of the supporters, and the discoii- tern) is like to go soon off the world, 
tinuance of the chevron as a mark of being an old man, and without issue 
cadency by the family of Dean, on male or female." Several of the 
account of its being the only family sculptured coats-of-arms which for- 


of Bemerside, the Barclays of Towie, the Douglases of 
Redhouse, the Montgomeries of Lainshaw, the Woods of 
Craigie, the Grahams of Netherness, the Braces of Airth ; 
and the Dundases, Fullartons, Inneses, Pollocks, Dal- 
inahoys, and Skenes of their respective Ilks. The same 
author also refers to the fact of several noble families in- 
cluding the Earls of Home, and the Lords Cranstoun and 
Somerville having used the supporters which they at 
present bear long before they were raised to the peerage. 
With respect to supporters borne by private families, 
Edmondson remarks " that those families who anciently 
used such supporters, either on their seals, banners, or 
monuments, and carved them in stone or wood, or de- 
picted them on the glass windows of their mansions-, and 
in the churches, chapels, and religious houses, of their 
foundation, endowment, or patronage, as perspicuous 
evidences and memorials of their having a possessory 
right to such supporters, are fully and absolutely well 
entitled to bear them ; and that no one of the descen- 
dants of such families ever ought to alienate such sup- 
porters, or bear his arms without them, because such 
possessory right is by far more honourable than any 
modern grant of supporters that can be obtained from 
an Office of Arms." l 

The following observations from a MS. of Wingfield, 
York Herald, of the English College of Arms (1663-74), 

merly embellished the old mansion- one of the terrace-walls of the ceme- 

house of Dean, in the neighbourhood tery which occupies its site, 

of Edinburgh (which was demolished l Complete Body of Heraldry, i. 

in the year 1845), are now built into 192. 


are printed in Dallaway's Heraldic Inquiries (p. 96) : 
" Anciently there was noe written precedent for ordering 
the bearing of supporters, nor for limiting them to the 
major nobilitie. The ancientest memorials are those 
inscribed in the old seales of many families, both peers, 
knights, and esquires, which is conceived among knights 
to mean knights bannerets, in the rest official dignities. 
The moderne use of them is now chiefly in the greater no- 
bility, and knights of the garter, or persons that were of 
the privy-council, or had some command whereby they had 
the title of Lord prefixed to their style, as Lord Deputy of 
Ireland, Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports, Lord President, 
Counsellors of the North or Marches of Wales, or Lord 
Warden of the ^tanneries. That the peers of the realm did 
and might bear them, is not the question. That others 
under the degree of peers in Parliament did bear them, and 
by what reason or right, and how the precedent of their 
ancestors bearing supporters may justify the use of them 
in lineal heirs, is the question. It is confessed there is 
little or nothing in precedent to direct the use of sup 
porters. I suppose, since custom and practice hath re- 
duced the use of bearing supporters to the major nobility, 
no inferior degree may now assume them, nor may 
Garter assign them to the lesser nobility. But these 
families, whose ancestors have used supporters, whose 
monuments are accomplished with them, whose houses 
are adorned with them, and whose pious foundations 
continue them, the churches, chapels, and religious places 
whereof they were patrons, founders, and benefactors, 
that render memorials of them, have such possessory 


right unto them that they cannot be suppressed or alien- 
ated, but may safely and justly continue." 1 

Although supporters have generally been carried by 
Chiefs of clans, several of the lesser Barons have not 
thought proper to use them ; but they have always been 
borne, not only by many orf their number on whom the 
dignity of Baronet was conferred, but also by several 
others who were never honoured with that distinction. 

In some instances, the privilege of using supporters 
has been established by ancient usage, and is altogether 
independent of Chieftainship or Baronial rank ; but 
the presumption in favour of tins prescriptive right is 
very generally confirmed by one or both of these addi- 
tional qualifications. " There are many more gentlemen," 
says Nisbet, " besides the ancient Barons and Chiefs of 
families, who have supporters added to their blazons in 
our new Register of Arms, having right, as I suppose, 
by concession or prescription." 2 We have already seen 
that the prerogative of concession has not always been 
confined to the Sovereign (as Nisbet unquestionably 
implies it ought to be), but has sometimes been most 
unwarrantably exercised by the authorities of the Lyon 
Office, in utter disregard of heraldic principles. It would 
be no very difficult task to adduce several examples of 
such irregularities, but a single instance will perhaps be 
deemed sufficient ; and it may be observed that a family 

1 " For proof and illustration," the Scottish surnames of Balfour and 

writer also specifies " some few pre- Napier, 
cedents of this nature, collected out 

of many that are observable in every 2 System of fferalilry, vol. ii. part 

shire ;" and his list embraces the iv. p. 33. 


of distinction has been purposely selected. After blazon- 
ing the arms of Dundas of Arniston, without any 
mention of supporters, Nisbet goes on to say that " the 
first of this family was Sir James Dundas, son of the 
second marriage of George Dundas of that Ilk, and his 
wife, Katharine Oliphant, daughter to the Lord Oliphant. 
His son, Sir James, was one of the senators of the Col- 
lege of Justice, and his grandchild, the present Robert 
Dundas of Arniston, also another senator of that learned 
bench, obtained from the Lyon Herald a new extract of 
the foresaid blazon, with the addition of supporters, viz., 
that on the right side, a lion rampant gules, and the 
other, on the left, an elephant proper, to show his 
descent from the Lord Oliphant." 1 It does not appear 
upon what ground the additional grant of supporters was 
here made, and we are unable to discover that it was 
justified by any of the special circumstances enumerated 
by Mr. Tait. Sir George Mackenzie quotes the opinion 
of Chassaneus, to the effect that " an heritable sheriff, or 
an eminent judge may take supporters ;" 2 and were we 
satisfied that such a privilege derived any sanction from 
the heraldic usage of Scotland, there certainly could not 
be the shadow of an objection to the use of these 
appendages by the family in question, to whose judicial 
eminence it is almost unnecessary to allude. 3 

1 System of Heraldry, i. 275. the portrait of Sir James Dundas, 

2 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxxi. Governor of Berwick (the first of the 

3 Since writing the above, the House of Arniston) the crest being 
author has been informed by the a lion's head, " couped," (?) instead 
present representative of the family of a lion's head, "affrontSe, struggling 
of Arniston that two lions occur as through an oak branch," and the 
supporters, with the date 1594, on motto "Avant" instead of "Essayez." 


Besides Knights of the Garter, of the Thistle, and of 
St. Patrick, who are now usually if not invariably Peers, 
Knights Grand Crosses of the Bath, and also of the 
Order of St. Michael and St. George, are dignified at 
their creation by a grant of supporters, which, however, 
are only personal. It is not quite clear when supporters 
first became the distinguishing mark of the Peerage and 
the higher Orders of Knighthood, but they appear to 
have been pretty generally used by both Noblemen 
and Knights of the Garter before the middle of the 
sixteenth century. The first stall-plate of a Knight of 
the Garter bearing supporters is that of John Beaufort, 
who was elected into that Order in the twentieth year 
of the reign of Henry vi. (1442) ; but it has been 
doubted whether the plate itself is of so early a date. 1 
The only other persons entitled to the use of supporters 
are those on whom they are directly conferred by the 
Sovereign. They have, however, been occasionally 
granted to some of the principal Corporations both 
in England and Scotland, but are generally of a later 
date than the other parts of the achievements. In the 
case of the Ironmongers (of England) they were granted 
as far back as the year 1560, which is supposed to be 
the earliest instance of the use of supporters by a cor- 
porate body. 

That part of Mr. Tait's opinion which calls in question 
the right of Scottish Baronets, as such, to use supporters, 
appears to rest on very solid grounds. Not many years 
ago, a great clamour was raised in certain quarters re- 

1 Arch&ologia, vol. xxxi. 


specting some imaginary rights and privileges of the 
whole Order of Baronets, including " honorary epithets, 
secondary titles, personal decorations, and augmented 
heraldic bearings." Besides a proposed petition to her 
Majesty for a distinctive coronet, a claim to supporters 
was boldly advanced on the unwarranted assumption 
that all Baronets must be regarded as Nobiles majores, 
from the circumstance of their being possessed of here- 
ditary titles, 1 and because it is declared in one of the 
Royal Ordinances by which the Order is established, that 
" if any doubts or questions not thereby, nor by any our 
recited letters-patent, cleared and determined, do or shall 
arise, such doubts or questions shall be decided and de- 
termined by and according to such usual rules, customs, 
and laws, for place, precedency, privilege, or other 
matters concerning them, as other degrees of dignity 
hereditary, are ordered and adjudged." It was also 
urged that Baronets are entitled to supporters, because 
they happen to take precedence of Knights of the Bath, 
who, as already stated, have a right to use these armorial 
distinctions ; and much stress was laid on the fact that 
supporters are borne by the Baronets of Scotland "a 
junior branch of the Order." The utter groundlessness of 
these modest pretensions, was ably exposed in the 
Athenwum of the 16th and 20th May 1840, in a review 
of two of the pamphlets by which they were advocated, 

1 No such, idea seems to have been land. In some modern "Red books," 

entertained by Sir Robert Douglas, the pretensions in question are some- 

who includes the pedigrees of the what encouraged by the circumstance 

Baronets in his Baronage, or (Jenealo- of the Baronets being embraced along 

gical Account of the Oeninj of Scot- with the Peerage. 


from which we moke the. following quotation respecting 
the claim to supporters : " In the time of James I. (of 
England), supporters were confined to Peers and Knights 
of the Gaiter ; and they were not borne by Knights of 
the Bath until the creation of that Order as a regular 
military Order of Knighthood by George I. in 1725, for 
which purpose a special statute was issued. The pro- 
priety of assigning some armorial distinction to the 
Baronets did not escape their royal founder ; and, in the 
decree of 1612, which settled so many other points con- 
nected with their position and privileges, the King 
granted that ' the Baronets and their descendants shall 
and may bear, either in a canton in their coat of arms, 
or in an inescutcheon, at their election, the arms of Ulster 
that is, in a field argent, a hand gules, or a bloody 
hand/ Not a word occurs about supporters ; and as the 
use of these heraldic ornaments was then as well known, 
and governed by as strict rules as at present, no one can 
believe that if it had been intended that Baronets should 
bear them, words to that effect would not have been 
introduced into the decree. The 'fair presumption ' 
that it was unnecessary to specify them because it was a 
privilege ' that the members of the Order should bear 
supporters, that privilege having been incidentally con- 
ferred by the charters granting to the Baronets that 
they should be adjudged in all things relating to title, 
dignity, privilege, and other matters, as other degrees of 
hereditary dignity then and theretofore were ordered 
and adjudged,' is scarcely deserving of notice ; for it 
is obvious, from the context, that this analogy is only to 


apply in cases of ' doubts or questions, not cleared and 
determined ' by that decree, or the former patents ' con- 
cerning place, precedency, privilege, or other matters 
touching the Baronets, their heirs-male apparent, their 
wives, their eldest sons and their wives, their daughters, 
their younger sons and their wives, or any of them/ In 
that clause, ' privilege, or other matters,' are the only 
words that can by any possible construction include 
' supporters ; ' but the whole sentence shows that no 
other matters than those connected with place and pre- 
cedency were contemplated, because the children and 
the wives of the sons of Baronets are placed in the 
same category as the Baronets themselves. Moreover 
(we must repeat), it is only when ' doubts or questions 
not hereby, nor by any our recited letters-patent cleared 
and determined ' arise, that a reference to the usage re- 
specting ' other hereditary dignities ' is to be made. But 
what doubt has ever arisen, or can properly or fairly 
arise, respecting the armorial bearings of Baronets, when 
that very decree itself clearly and specially points out 
what their armorial distinctions shall be ? On the next 
assertion, that the 'fairness' of the claim may be drawn 
from the precedency of the ' Baronets above the Knights 
of the Bath ; those Knights having supporters, it is not 
unreasonable to argue that the superior order should 
have them likewise ; ' it is sufficient to remark, that, at 
the institution of Baronets, Knights of the Bath did not 
bear supporters ; that when they were assigned to them 
in 1725, the constitution of the Order had been entirely 
altered ; that the Knights then consisted of only thirty- 


seven persons, and even now scarcely exceed one 
hundred, many of whom are Peers ; that the Order of 
the Bath is one of the few rewards the Crown has to 
bestow for distinguished service to the State, whereas 
the first Baronets actually bought their dignity. There 
are now nine hundred Baronets, and they are constantly 
increasing ; so that, to extend the distinction, as a here- 
ditary right, to so large a body, would inevitably destroy 
its value." 

The Keviewer goes on to notice the argument which 
is founded on the use of supporters by the Baronets of 
Scotland, and after referring to the peculiarity in Scottish 
Heraldry by which these exterior decorations are not 
confined to the peerage, he adopts the erroneous opinion 
that the " Lord Lyon is empowered to grant them at his 
discretion," a privilege which is certainly not possessed 
by the Earl Marshal of England. " Whether the Lord 
Lyon," he continues, " who granted supporters to the 
Baronets of Nova Scotia, was justified in doing so, has 
but slight bearing on the present occasion. The words 
of the patents of Nova Scotia Baronets, their number, 
and the usage in Scotland, are altogether different from 
those of England ; so that his decision, supposing it 
(which is by no means conceded) to have been a proper 
one, cannot be deemed a precedent for admitting the 
pretensions of the Baronets of England and Ireland to 
the same distinction." l 

1 The whole of this able Review Nova Scotia Baronets, by an accom- 
is preserved in a little volume, pub- plished antiquary (W. B. D. D. Turn- 
lished in 1846, on the subject of the bull, Esq., Advocate), which contains 



It does not appear, however, as already stated, that 
there is any authority, either in their patents or else- 
where, to justify Scottish Baronets in the use of sup- 
porters ; and the unwarrantable practice which led to an 
opposite opinion is distinctly set forth in Mr. Tait's Note. 
The original constitution of the Scottish Order contains 
a clause which declares " that if any doubts or questions 
arise concerning any place, precedency, or prerogative 
due to the Baronets, at whatsoever time to come, such 
doubts and questions shall be determined and decided by 
the use and practice of custom and law, as other heredi- 
tary degrees of dignity are ordained and directed, cori- 

some curious genealogical revela- 
tions, and comments, with great 
justice and propriety, on the numer- 
ous evils which then resulted from 
the indefensible system of Scottish 
" Services," in the case of hereditary 
titles. Instead of raising a contempt- 
ible outcry about imaginary privi- 
leges, the " illustrious " Order of 
Baronets would assuredly have added 
to their reputation by a resolute en- 
deavour to improve these legal nui- 
sances, in virtue of which several 
existing Scottish Baronetcies were 
most unjustly assumed. Considering 
the fraudulent pretensions of these 
false Baronets, it would be well if 
some of our untitled gentlemen, whe- 
ther landed or professional, would 
dispute their precedency, instead of 
encoxiraging the paltry imposition 
by acknowledging the assumed supe- 

Shortly after the publication of Mr. 
Turnbull's volume, the service of 
heirs was placed on its present greatly 

improved footing by the Act 10 and 
11 Viet. c. 47. The old " Brieve of 
Inqiiest," which issued from Chan- 
cery, and which was followed by the 
verdict of a jury, was abolished by 
that Statute, and is now superseded 
by the Petition of Service, addressed 
either to the Sheriff of the county in 
which the deceased was domiciled, 
or to the Sheriff of Chancery, whether 
the service be general or special. If 
the deceased had no Scottish domi- 
cile, or if the claim be for special 
service to lands in different counties, 
the petition is competent to the She- 
riff of Chancery only. In the case of 
competing petitions, as well as where 
the application is unchallenged, the 
Sheriffs judgment takes the place of 
the verdict of the jury. The pro- 
ceedings, however, may be advocated 
to the Court of Session for jury trial ; 
and, in certain circumstances, the 
Sheriffs judgment may be brought 
under review by a note of advoca- 


corning place, prerogative, and precedency." It is quite 
unnecessary to make any comments upon the terms of 
this provision, which, it will be observed, is almost 
identical with that already discussed as relating to the 
Baronets of England. In the later patents of Scottish 
Baronets, we find a clause respecting their armorial bear- 
ings which is usually of the following tenor : " Manda- 
mus per prsesentes Leoni nostro Regi armorum suisque 
fratribus fecialibus ut tale additamentum armorum prse- 
sentibus insigniis prsenoniinati A. B. sicuti talibus casibus 
usitatum est dent et praescribant." Another specimen 
may be given as exhibiting a slight variation in the 
words, without, however, affecting the meaning of the 
injunction : " Leoni porro Armorum Regi ej usque fra- 
tribus fecialibus additamenta praesentibus insigniis ar- 
moriis dicti C. D. quae huic occasion! congrua et idonea 
videbuntur dare et praescribere imperamus." A good 
deal, of course, must depend on the interpretation of the 
word " additamentum ;" but a reference to the matricu- 
lations in the Lyon Register, during the purer days of 
Heraldry, will prove that supporters were not included 
in the expression " talibus casibus usitatum." In later 
times, no doubt, a very lax and unwarrantable practice 
was gradually introduced by the authorities of the Lyon 
Office, who seem to have considered these heraldic ap- 
pendages to be " congrua et idonea" in almost any case, 
where " Regina pecunia" thought proper to raise her 
persuasive voice. As in the case of the English Order, 
a distinctive badge was assigned to the Baronets of Scot- 
land, to which there can be very little doubt that the 



clause under consideration refers. It is expressly or- 
dained, in their earlier patents, " that the Baronets, and 
their heirs-male, should, as an additament of honour to 
their armorial ensigns, bear, either on a canton or in- 
escutcheon, in their option, the ensign of Nova Scotia, 
being argent, a cross of St. Andrew azure (the badge of 
Scotland counterchanged), charged with an inescutcheon 
of the royal arms of Scotland, supported on the dexter 
by the royal unicorn, and on the sinister by a savage or 
wild man, proper ; and for crest, a branch of laurel, and 
a thistle issuing from two hands conjoined, the one being 
armed, the other naked ; with the motto, Munit hcec et 
altera vincit." The incongruity of these exterior orna- 
ments within a shield of arms is noticed by Nisbet, who 
informs us, however, that they were very soon removed. 
In the year 1629, after Nova Scotia was sold to the 
French, the Baronets of Scotland, and their heirs-male, 
were authorized by Charles 1. " to wear and ca"rry about 
their necks, in all time coming, an orange-tawny silk 
ribbon, whereon shall be pendent, in a scutcheon argent, 
a saltire azure, thereon an inescutcheon of the arms of 
Scotland, with an imperial crown above the scutcheon, 
and encircled with this motto, Fax mentis honestw 
gloria!' According to the same authority, this badge 
was never much used " about their necks," but was 
carried, by way of canton or inescutcheon, in their armo- 
rial bearings, without the motto. The honest herald 
urges various objections to such a mode of bearing the 
honourable cognizance, which, he reasonably considers, 
instead of occupying a place within the shield, ought to 


be pendent therefrom, according to the usual practice of 
all other collared knights. 1 But whether the badge in 
question is placed within or without the escutcheon, if 
we except the distinctive helmet which appertains to 
Knights and Baronets generally, there can be very little 
doubt that it is the only heraldic " additamentum" which 
the Scottish Order are entitled to bear. 

The same view is adopted by Edmondson in his " Ac- 
count of the Baronets of Scotland," where he remarks 
that " a misconstruction of the clause in their earlier 
patents (already referred to) hath induced some of the 
Baronets of Scotland to suppose that, by virtue of their 
patents, they are entitled to add supporters to their 
paternal coats ; and they accordingly wear them in their 
armorial ensigns. But an impartial and deliberate con- 
sideration of the above clause w T ill convince them of their 
mistake ; more particularly as it is not pretended that 
there ever was any other royal grant or warrant issued, 
whereon they can found a claim to such privilege. Fur- 
ther, all the patents granted to the Nova Scotia Baronets 
in the year 1629, and subsequent thereunto, are made 
shorter than the preceding patents ; are granted in 
general terms ; omit the whole of the clause relative to 
the above-mentioned addition of honour to be borne on 
their paternal coats ; and grant them a different privi- 
lege," viz., the badge of the orange -tawny ribbon and 
relative accompaniments. 2 
* The following Table has been compiled from a com- 

1 See Nisbet's Heraldry, vol. i. p. 188, and vol. ii. part iv. pp. 123, et seq. 

2 Complete Body of Heraldry, vol. i. 



paratively recent edition of Burke's Peerage and Baron- 
etage, to illustrate the proportion of Baronets in the 
respective Orders by whom supporters are used : 

Existing Baronets. 




England (1611-1707), . . . 




Scotland (1625-1707), . . 




Ireland (1620-1801), .... 




Great Britain (1707-1801), . \ 

United Kingdom (subsequent > 




to 1801) ) 




It would appear, therefore, that supporters are carried by 
less than one-fifth of the existing Baronets, and of these 
more than one-half belong to the Scottish Order. Only 
nine out of one hundred and fifty-seven Baronets of 
England, and only three out of eighty-two Baronets of 
Ireland, add supporters to their escutcheons, being no 
doubt fully justified in doing so, not as the holders of 
hereditary titles, but as the representatives of families 
who have used these exterior distinctions from time 
immemorial. 1 Among the large majority, on the other 
hand, who bear no supporters, we find many ancient and 
important families, of whom it may be sufficient to men- 

1 Of these is the ancient family 
of Tichbourne, in Hampshire, every 
member of which, according to the Ox- 
ford Glossary of Heraldry (p. 299), is 
entitled to use supporters, contrary to 
the general rule, which confines them 
to the head of the House. As other 
examples of untitled English families 
who bear supporters by prescriptive 
right, we may mention the Fulfords 

of Great Fulford, in Devonshire, the 
Luttrells of Somersetshire, the Sa- 
vages of Cheshire, and the Trevanions 
of Cornwall. The heads of the dif- 
ferent Septs in Ireland are said to 
assert their claim to supporters, 
which are also adopted by the Welsh 
Barons of Edeiruion and their de- 
scendants. See Burke's Patrician, 
vol. i. p. 31. 


tion the Bacons of Redgrave (Premier Baronets of Eng- 
land), the Gerards of Bryn, the Temples of Stowe, the 
Trelawneys of Trelawney, the Burgoynes of Sutton 
Park, the Blounts of Soddington, the Massey-Stanleys of 
Hooton, the Mostyns of Talacre, the Cooks of Ballyfin, 
the Butlers of Garryhundon, the Moores of Eoss Carbery, 
and the O'Briens of Dromoland. 

Although many of the Scottish Baronets who use 
supporters are fully entitled to do so on the ground of 
chieftainship, ancient usage, or as being the representa- 
tives of lesser Barons, there can be no doubt that a very 
considerable number of them, have no more right to 
these exterior ornaments than any ordinary untitled 
commoner. Any one who takes the trouble to consult 
the pages of Nisbet will find the arms of many Baronets 
of Scotland, who now use supporters, without any men- 
tion of these honourable distinctions, of whom we may 
notice by way of example, the Riddells of Riddell, the 
Agnews of Lochnaw, the Maxwells of Monreith, the 
Clerks of Penicuik, cind the Hopes of Craighall. Again, 
among the minority of existing Scottish Baronets who 
do not carry supporters, we find the well-known families 
of Murray of Ochtertyre, Pringle of Stitchell, Stewart of 
Grandtully, Maxwell of Calderwood, Foulis of Colinton, 
Anstruther of Balcaskie, and Balfour of Denmiln. 1 

Out of the six hundred existing Baronets of Great 

1 The first Baronet of Denmiln fourie, Premier Baronet of Scotland, 

was Sir James Balfour, who filled the are also blazoned by Sir Bernard 

office of Lyon King-at-Arms during Burke without supporters, which, 

the reign of Charles I. however, are assigned to the family 

The arms of Gordon of Letter- in Douglas's Baronage. 


Britain and the United Kingdom, the arms of eighty, 
or nearly one-seventh, arc blazoned with supporters. 
Several of these can point to chieftainship or ancient 
usage in justification of the privilege, while upon others 
it has been directly conferred by royal license. In 
numerous instances, moreover, supporters have been 
granted, along with " augmentations " to the escutcheon, 
in acknowledgment of distinguished services in the 
cabinet or on the field of battle, and several of our 
modern Baronets bear these exterior ornaments as 
Knights Grand Crosses of the Bath. But we must not 
fail to observe that supporters are carried by several 
modern Baronets connected, with Scotland, who cannot 
possibly establish their right to bear them in accordance 
with the strict principles of pure heraldry. In the cases 
of Scott of Duninald and Fraser of Ledeclune, these 
honourable distinctions are said to have been " ratified 
and confirmed by patent from the Lord Lyon King-of- 
Arms," while " two horses, proper, being the supporters 
of the extinct Lords Rutherford, " were granted to the 
first Baronet of the family of Antrobus, on his purchas- 
ing the estate of Rutherford in the county of Roxburgh ! * 
Without the very slightest intention of giving offence, as 
affording other examples of a questionable right to sup- 
porters, we may adduce the highly respectable families 
of Baillie of Polkemmet, Buchan-Hepburn of Smeaton, 
Campbell of Barcaldine, Dalrymple-Hay of Glenluce, 

1 The same supporters, as well as Hue of the old Lords Rutherford, 
the arms of Rutherford, are carried whose Peerage they are understood 
by the Durhams of Largo, as heirs of to claim. 


Dundas of Beecliwood, Hunter-Blair of Blairquhan, 
Mackenzie of Kilcoy, Macpherson-Grant of Ballindalloch, 
Maxwell of Cardoness, Riddell of Ardnamurchan, and 
Walker-Drummond of Hawthornden. 

Some persons will doubtless feel surprised to find the 
use of supporters denied to an honourable section of 
the community which is dignified with a hereditary title, 
while it is conceded to many families who are possessed 
of no such distinction. But they must bear in mind 
that the order of Baronets is an institution of compara- 
tively modern date, and the apparent anomaly is at least 
partially explained by the following passages from Sir 
George Mackenzie's treatise on Precedency : " When 
taxations were laid on by the Council, I find by the old 
records, as particularly in October 1562, that Noblemen 
and Burgesses are called but no Barons, the Barons and 
Noblemen having been then represented promiscuously, 
and that long after the Act of Parliament allowing them 
to send commissioners; and this is the reason, why our old 
Barons, who are not Lords, and hold only their lands in 
free Barony, have supporters in their achievement; and 
that with some reluctancy they yield the precedency to 
Knights-Baronets, they being originally heritable coun- 
sellors to the King, as members of Parliament, and not 
debarred." Again, he observes, that " the old Barons 
(or Lairds) amongst us, especially where they are Chiefs 
of Clans, or the representatives of old families that were 
Earldoms (as Pitcur is of the Earl of Dirleton, and as 
Chief of the name of Halyburton), have never ceded the 
precedency to Knights-Baronets, much less to ordinary 


Knights, though the other pretend that a Baron is no 
name of dignity, and that Knights-Baronets have a 
special privilege, that there shall be no degree betwixt 
them and Lords, except the Bannerets : And though 
militia non est per se dignitas, yet generally it is be- 
lieved, that next to Knights-Baronets succeed Knights- 
Bachelors, and next to them our Lairds or Landed 
Gentlemen, though a Laird, in effect, is but the corrupt 
word of a Lord." 1 

It is by no means certain, as stated by the Interim 
Lyon-Depute, that with the exception of Peeresses in 
their own right, no women are entitled to wear suppor- 
ters. According to Mackenzie, they " generally use no 
supporters, but surround their shields with a cord of their 
colours," the cordeliere being borne by widows, and the 
lacs d'amour by maids. Supporters, however, have been 
frequently granted to females by the authorities of the 
Lyon Office, which practice will be afterwards noticed in 
connexion with the subject of heraldic succession. In 
some of the more recent patents, a clause of destination 
is, no doubt, inserted, which tends to corroborate the 
statement of Mr. Tait, that " the representation of 
families is only in the male line ; " but the practice 
appears to have been so varied that no general rule can 

1 Treatise on Precedency, chapter to a gentleman of ten, if there be 

viii. The learned author concludes not a very great disparity betwixt 

the same chapter in the following their fortunes ; and that for the 

terms : " Tho' generally it be be- same reason almost that a gentleman 

lieved that gentlemen have no pre- of three generations claims prece- 

cedeney one from another, yet reason dency from any ordinary landed 

and discretion do allow that a gentle- man who has newly acquired his 

man of three generations should cede lands." 


be deduced from the entries in the Eegister, to a few of 
which we now intend to allude. In the year 1813, for 
example, supporters were granted to John Ramsay 
L'Amy of Dunkenny, as Chief of the surname of L'Amy, 
and representative of the family of Dunkenny ; but they 
are limited, along with the rest of the arms, " to the 
heirs-male of his body." 1 While the propriety of such a 
limitation admits of very great doubt, the remarkable 
inconsistency of this particular remainder arises from 
the fact of the diploma distinctly narrating that the 
grantee derives the headship and representation of the 
family, through the female heir-general, to wit, his own 
mother, Margaret L'Amy, the lineal descendant of Alex- 
ander L'Amy (or .more probably Lammie), who died in 
1518 the patentee's father being James Ramsay of 
Chapelton. We have already expressed a qualified 
opinion in favour of the views set forth in Mr. Tait's 
" Note," so far as it enumerates the principal grounds of 
right to supporters, but the theory in terms of which 
he would confine their use to heirs- male, and even to 
heirs-male of the body, appears to be open to question. 
As already stated, however, the consideration of this 
point will necessarily fall to be treated under the 
inquiry into the rules and principles which regulate 
heraldic succession in general. 

In the year 1855, we find an entry in the Register 
relative to the armorial insignia of Lady Mary Christo- 
pher-Nisbet-Hamilton (formerly Christopher) of Blox- 

1 Lyou Register, ii. 93. This limi- which weareinfonneddoesnotalways 
tation does not appear in the Record, embrace the destination of the arms. 


holm, in Lincolnshire, and of Dirleton and Belhaven 
in the county of Haddington, spouse of the Right 
Honourable Robert Adam Christopher-Nisbet -Hamilton, 
and eldest surviving child of the marriage between the 
late Thomas Earl of Elgin and Kincardine and his Coun- 
tess Mary, only child and heiress of William Hamilton- 
Nisbet of Dirleton and Belhaven by his wife Mary 
Hamilton, heiress of Pencaitland. The first and fourth 
quarters of the escutcheon exhibit the arms of Hamilton, 
and the second quarter those of Nisbet, as recorded in 
1801 for the patentee's maternal grandfather ; while the 
third quarter contains the arms of Christopher, conform 
to an exemplification granted by the English College of 
Heralds in 1836. These arms are impaled in the Regis- 
ter with those of the patentee's husband 1 (which consist 
of the same quarterings), the bearings of Hamilton and 
Nisbet being destined to the patentee and the heirs of 
her body, and " in the special circumstances of this 
case" (which however are not specified) "authority is 
granted to the said patentee and her heirs aforesaid only, 
to continue to use the supporters conceded to the said 
William Hamilton-Nisbet, Esquire," in 180 1. 2 In this 
case, as well as in that of Dunkenny, it may perhaps be 
alleged that the supporters were granted on the under- 
standing that there was no heir-male to dispute the 

1 The Register furnishes very few those of his wife, Henrietta- Mary, 

examples of "Baron and Femme." daughter of the late John Wauchope 

In the year 1845 (vol iv. p. 87) the of Edmonstone, and sister of the 

bearings of Sir James Gardiner Baird present Sir John Don Wauchope of 

(great-great-grandson of the brave Newton. 
Colonel Gardiner) are impaled with a Lyon Register, v. 77. 


concession ; but we merely refer to these grants as 
illustrative of a practice altogether opposed to the 
opinion of Mr. Tait. 1 

Why supporters were granted in the year 1809 to Sir 
James Shaw, formerly Lord Mayor of London, is not 
very satisfactorily explained in the following narrative 
of the Lord Lyon : " And we, being desirous, conform 
to the powers vested in us by the Laws and Practice of 
Heraldry in Scotland, and letters-patent by which we 
were created Lord Lyon King of Arms, to confer a mark 
of His Majesty's and our own approbation of the public 
services of the said Sir James Shaw, on account of 
which he has been lately raised to the dignity of a 
Baronet of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and 
Ireland, Have therefore resolved to add to the arms above 
recited the supporters following," viz., a wild man, emble- 
matical of Fortitude, and a female figure, emblematical 
of the city of London the destination being to the said 
Sir James and the heirs-male of his body. 2 In the year 
1816, a still more extraordinary concession of supporters 
was made to Sir Jonathan Wather Waller, Baronet, of 
Braywick Lodge, in the County of Berks, and of Twick- 
enham in the county of Middlesex, with a similar desti- 
nation. In this case, the supporters are two elaborately 
" harnessed " ancient warriors, " to commemorate the 
surrender of Charles, Duke of Orleans, at the memorable 
battle of Agincourt (that word being the motto over the 

1 On a still more recent occasion, cruive, as heir-general of the ancient 

supporters have been granted, along family of Haldane of that Ilk. in the 

with certain additional quarterings, county of Roxburgh, 

to Mr. Haldane-Oswald of Auchen- 2 Lyon Register, ii. 35. 


crest) in the year 1415, to Richard Waller of Groom - 
bridge in Kent, Esquire, from which Richard the said 
Sir Jonathan Wather Waller is, according to the tradi- 
tion of his family, descended." 1 The reason adduced for 
granting supporters to Sir Coutts Trotter, "Banker in 
London," and to Sir James Hunter Blair, about ten years 
later, is also very strange ; but the Lord Lyon's paren- 
thetical resolution (in the former of these two cases), 
to regulate the concession of such armorial distinctions 
by strict heraldic practice is a very comforting compen- 
sation. The narrative proceeds as follows : " Whereas 
Sir Coutts Trotter, Baronet, Banker in London, hath in 
a petition of date 13th October 1826, represented to us 
(the Lord Lyon) that, in January 1822, an understand- 
ing had been conveyed to his agent by our Deputy that 
the distinction of armorial supporters would be conceded 
to the said Sir Coutts Trotter on the ground of his being 
a British Baronet of Scotch descent, and therefore 
prayed (although we have thought fit subsequently to 
restrict our grants of such armorial distinction as a 
matter of right to those whose claims may be founded 
upon ancient usage in their families, or those grounds of 
prescription that have of old been esteemed fit authority 
for any gentleman in Scotland below the dignity of a 
Peer of the realm to use armorial supporters, excepting 
always such cases wherein we may yet be pleased to 
exercise the peculiar privileges of our office) that we 
should grant our license and authority to him and the 
heirs of his body, his representatives in the Baronetcy, 

1 Lyon Register, ii. 152. 


the following ensigns armorial " including a horse and 
a lion as supporters. 1 Among many other questionable 
concessions, we may refer to the grant to Sir John 
Stewart Richardson of Pitfour,.in the year 1837, of the 
supporters conferred (perhaps without sufficient reason) 
on Sir James Richardson of Bellmont in 1783 ; such 
grant being merely made in compliance with Sir John's 
own special application, and no ground being assigned 
for the concession. 2 In the year 1838, on the other hand, 
the escutcheon of Sir Thomas Burnet of Leys is intel- 
ligibly supported by a Highlander and a greyhound, in 
consequence of his being " the male representative of one 
of the minor Barons of Scotland prior to the year 1587." 3 
The right to supporters on the part of Chiefs of Clans 
is very much qualified in Mr. Tait's statement. The 
Court of Session has recently failed to determine what a 
clan is ; 4 and probably a still more puzzling question 
might be proposed with reference to the definition of a 
Chief. Mr. Tait limits the privilege to "lawful heirs- 
male of Chiefs of tribes or clans which had attained 
power and extensive territories and numerous members 
at a distant period, or at least of tribes consisting of 
numerous families of some degree of rank and considera- 
tion." Any new claim on the ground of chieftainship is 
open to grave suspicion, and the difficulty of satisfac- 
torily establishing it would undoubtedly be very great. 
If, moreover, a numerous " following " is an essential 

1 Lyou Register, iii. 47. to Sir John Forbes of Craigievar in 

1843, vol. iv. p. 63. 

- Ibid. IV. 22. . m/rn- -i 0.1. 

* M'Gillivray v. Souter and others, 
3 Ibid. iv. 33. See also the grant March 12, 1862. 


requisite, we fear that several escutcheons in the recent 
volumes of the Register are very questionably accom- 
panied by supporters. Thus, in the year 1854, Mr. 
Maconochie Wellwood is dignified with two Highlanders, 
attired proper (?), " as Chief of the name Maconochie 
or Maccondacy ;' n and, as we have already stated, Mr. 
Ramsay L'Amy of Dunkenny is similarly honoured, in 
1813, as the" Chief of the surname of L'Amy." In 
accordance with this liberal principle of unlimited con- 
cession, the bearer of some unknown, and perhaps 
assumed, surname might establish his chieftainship with 
a view to armorial supporters ; and in addition to " The 
Macnab " and " The Mackintosh," every village in Scot- 
land might boast of its own special " The." Accordingly, 
we might have "The Cntickshank," "The Littlejohn," 
" The Proudfout," or even that great hero, not unknown 
to poetical fame, " The Higginbottorn." 

" Still o'er his head, while Fate he braved, 
His whizzing water-pipe he waved ; 
' Whitford and Mitford, ply your pumps, 
You, Clutterbuck, come, stir your stumps, 
Why are you in such doleful dumps 1 
A fireman, and afraid of bumps ! 
What are they feared on 1 fools, 'od rot 'em ! ' 
Were the last words of Higy inbottom.'' ' 2 

Let us express a hope that this illustrious ornament of 
the fire brigade was survived by an "heir-male of his 
body," to inherit the honours of the chieftainship ! 

It is satisfactory, however, to be able to state that 

1 Lyon Register, v. 60. 

2 " A Tale of Drnry Lane." Rejected Addresses. 


the practice of indiscriminate concession of supporters 
is now unknown in the Lyon Office ; and we are told 
that, not many years ago, a respectable landowner in 
the north of Scotland, who offered any amount of the 
current coin for the appendages in question, was in- 
dignantly informed by the representatives of the Lord 
Lyon, that supporters were not sold by his Lordship > 

A somewhat singular procedure was the result of the 
decision of the Court of Session in the case of Cuning- 
hame v. Cunyngham (1849), to which we shall afterwards 
have occasion pretty fully to allude. On the heir of 
line, Mr. Smith Cuninghame of Caprington, being found 
entitled to bear the disputed arms and supporters (two 
white horses), they were matriculated accordingly in the 
Lyon Eegister ; while the Lord Lyon assigned the same 
arms, within a bordure for difference, to Sir William 
Hanmer Dick Cunyngham, the heir-male, along with a 
pair of black horses as supporters. 1 

We have already referred to the special grant of sup- 
porters to the distinguished family of Abbotsford, and 
probably a more graceful departure from strict heraldic 
practice could not be conceived. In the year 1820, we 
find an entry in the Register relative to the arms of 
" Walter Scott of Abbotsford ;" and two years later his 
bearings are re-matriculated, as those of " Sir Walter," 
with supporters, besides an additional motto under the 
escutcheon (" Watch Weel"), and a full-sized, instead of 
a demi nymph for crest. 2 In the year 1848, an entry 
appears in the Register respecting the armorial insignia 

1 Lyon Register, v. 11, 15. 2 Ibid. ii. 190. 


of Walter Scott Lockhart- Scott (formerly Walter Scott 
Lockhart) of Abbotsford, son of Sir Walter's daughter 
Sophia Charlotte, required by deed of entail to bear the 
surname and arms of Scott of Abbotsford, as matriculated 
in 1822. The Record declares that these arms " are 
now conceded to him, along with the distinction of the 
supporters therewith borne, in respect of the special 
circumstances set forth in his application, and as being 
the sole heir of line and representative of his highly 
distinguished and gifted ancestor, Sir Walter Scott, 
Baronet, the first of Abbotsford, which distinction of 
supporters was further conceded by the Lord Lyon, in 
the exercise of his Lordship's official prerogative, as a 
mark of respect to the memory of the eminent deceased, 
and to perpetuate the same to the family arms." ] 

Finally, with reference to the practice of the Lyon 
Office in the matter of supporters, we may state that, in 
some of the recent matriculations of the arms of Noble- 
men, the escutcheon is illuminated without supporters, 
as in the case of Lord Glenelg, in 1835, and the Earl of 
Haddington, in 1859 2 an illustration of the fact that, 
while some persons are guilty of heraldic sins of commis- 
sion, by taking those things they ought not to have taken, 
others perhaps for good and sufficient reasons neglect 
to take those things to which they are fully entitled. 

1 Lyon Register, iv. 111. In 1853, Hope-Scott of ALbotsford, wife of 

the same arms, without the crest James Robert Hope, now Hope-Scott, 

and. supporters, are entered in the Barrister-at-la\v, and only surviving 

Register (v. 32) as those of (the now child of Sir Walter's daughter, Mrs. 

deceased ) Mrs. Charlotte Harriet Sophia Charlotte Scott or Lockhart. 
Jane Lockhart - Hope, afterwards 2 Ibid. iv. 1, and vi. 15. 



THE abstract question of heraldic succession, as in- 
volved in a competition between the heir-male and the 
heir of line through a female, is attended with very con- 
siderable difficulty, which will probably not be cleared 
away until a pure and unqualified case presents itself 
for the decision of the Supreme Court. Although, no 
doubt, the subject is incidentally noticed by the prin- 
cipal writers on Heraldry, it is hardly possible to deduce 
any distinct and positive conclusions from their scattered 
and imperfect statements ; which in some cases are so 
unintelligible and contradictory, that, instead of remov- 
ing, they rather tend to increase the perplexities of the 
most patient inquirer. If, again, we turn to the practice 
of the Lyon Office, it will be found, from the most cur- 
sory examination, that in many instances armorial matri- 
culations have long been made independently of any very 
strict or definite principles. 

We learn from Mr. Tait's Deposition, 1 that since his 
appointment to the office of Lyon-Depute " some in- 
stances have occurred Avhere appli cations have been made 

1 See Chapter TV. p. 63. 


by persons stating themselves to be heirs-male of fami- 
lies, the senior branches of which had become extinct in 
the male line, and which claims have been decided on 
by the deponent ; and one case (he adds) is now depend- 
ing where competition has occurred respecting the right 
of bearing the arms of a particular family. Being inter- 
rogated, whether any record of the proceedings in such 
cases is made and preserved in the Office ; (he) depones 
that there is not, so far as he knows ; but when a case 
is disposed of by the arms being granted, the grant is 
entered in the register of arms, and the relationship of 
the party is generally entered shortly in the grant. . . . 
Being (further) interrogated, according to what rules or 
ordinances cases respecting the grant of arms or compe- 
titions of claims between different parties are determined, 
and whether there is any record of proceedings or deci- 
sions in such matters ; (he) depones, that he is not aware 
of any record of precedents in cases of this nature ; that 
he has not, since his appointment, had occasion to decide 
in any formal or regular question of competition, but 
that the rules according to which he would form his opi- 
nion, and which he has observed in so far as he has been 
called upon to decide on claims presented, are those to be 
found in the Acts of the Scottish Parliament, 1592, cap. 
125, and 1672, cap. 21, and the rules laid down by Sir 
George Mackenzie, Nisbet, and other writers on Her- 
aldry." It unfortunately happens, however, as already 
stated, that it is by no means easy to extract any de- 
finite or inflexible rules from the works of our heraldic 
authorities respecting the subject under consideration, to 


which their occasional allusions are very far from clear 
and satisfactory ; and we also look in vain to the pages 
of Stair and Erskine, or any other of our institutional 
writers, for the slightest indication of a distinct opinion 
on the mysterious question. 

It is universally ackno wedged that the preference of 
males to females in heritable succession arose entirely 
from the peculiar spirit of the Feudal law, which differed 
in this and in other important respects from several of 
the earlier codes, more particularly those of Rome. Under 
the Feudal system, the property, or rather the possession 
of the soil, was bestowed for personal services in war, 
which women were incapable of performing, and accord- 
ingly, for a very long period, they were entirely excluded 
from succession. But this rigid principle gradually gave 
way under the general softening and improvement in 
manners, and very considerable changes were eventually 
effected, not only in the nature of military fiefs, but also 
by the introduction of other kinds of holdings ; in con- 
sequence of which the " rights of women" ceased to be 
altogether overlooked long before the days of Mary 
Woolstancroft. The remains of their former condition, 
however, are still very apparent in the case of heritable 
succession, which does not open to them until after the 
failure of all the males in the same degree ; while the 
privilege of primogeniture is only recognised among them 
to a limited extent. In consequence 'of these peculiari- 
ties, and in utter disregard of the various important 
changes which have occurred in our social system, many 
persons are too apt to be influenced by unfounded pre- 


judices, and to adopt some of those notions and opinions 
which were most legitimately entertained in an earlier 
age. Without venturing to call in question the universal 
maxim of lawyers, which pronounces the lord of the soil 
to be the " dignior persona" in comparison with his 
gentler helpmate, it may probably be asserted, without 
much fear of contradiction, that there is less room than 
formerly for the civil distinction of sexes in these en- 
lightened times, which are so essentially different in their 
characteristics from the bygone days of feudalism. Fully 
admitting the propriety of preferriDg the son to the 
daughter in the representation of the family, and in the 
succession to the heraldic honours, as well as the more 
substantial rights, it is assuredly a very different propo- 
sition to maintain that, where there happens to be no 
direct male issue, a daughter and her descendants are to 
be unceremoniously postponed to a nephew or an uncle, 
and indeed to any male collateral, however remote. 

As we have already hinted, some ardent supporters of 
the preferable right of the heir-male appear to forget that 
the rules of succession observed under their favourite 
Feudal system, were for ages preceded by other rules of 
a very different character. If they will take the trouble 
to turn to the 2 7th chapter of the Book of Numbers, they 
will find that the general question of male and female 
succession was raised upwards of three thousand years 
ago, and decided, moreover, in favour of the heir of line ! 
On that occasion, the parties were the daughters of Zelo- 
phehad, and the judge no other than Moses, the man who 
was " learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians." 

CRAIG'S "jus FEUDALE." 325 

" Our father," said the former, " died in the wilderness, 
.... and had no sons. Why should the name of our 
father be done away from among his family, because he 
hath no son ? Give unto us therefore a possession among 
the brethren of our father." With reverence be it stated, 
the plea was fully sustained to the effect that, failing a 
man's son, " his inheritance shall pass unto his daughter ;" 
failing a daughter, it shall go to his brethren, whom fail- 
ing, to his father's brethren ; and if his father should 
have no brethren, the inheritance shall fall to " his kins- 
man that is next to him of his family." The following- 
passages relative to the subject in question occur in 
Sir Thomas Craig's celebrated treatise on the Feudal Law 
(Lib. II. Dieg. 13, 14) : 

" Naturalis enim equitas liberos ad successiones paren- 
tum vocat, licet aliquas restrictiones sive limitationes in 
jure Feudali et nostris moribus patiatur." 

..." Haec ad verbum, in quo hoc notandum, ordinem 
successionis a Deo institutum, sequumque pronunciari, 
ut masculi in primo gradu foeminis prseferantur, sic ut 
deficiente linea recta masculina, et non alias, fceminae 
succederent, prirnoque gradui collateralium prseponantur ; 
collaterals vero, ut quisque gradu propior, sic ad suc- 
cessionem vocetur." 

" Uxorius tamen Imperator vitium antiquitatis corri- 
gens, eos natures accusatores vocat, qui aliam conditio- 
nem succedendi in maribus, aliam in foeminis facerent, 
quasi natura peccasset, quod non omnes masculos gene- 
raverit, ut, unde postea generarentur, non esset." 

Sir Thomas then alludes to the demands of another 


age, during the irruptions of the northern nations, when 
military service was introduced, and thus proceeds : 
" Itaque ex jure Feudali, heredes masculi tantum succe- 
derent, et non foerninse, etiam si arma tractare didicerint, 
ut antiquitus Amazones solebant, ut de Joanna Puella 
Aurelianensi, et quadam hodie Hibernica narratur." 
Again : " Quid vero, si provisum sit, ut, deficientibus 
masculis, una foemina succedat, et plures sint ejusdem 
gradus, quae prseferetur ? Multi sunt qui primogenitam 
prseferendam putant, quod et nos sequimur ; licet sint, 
qui id vel arbitrio domini vel patris permittant ; quidam 
forte dirimendum putant ; alii, omnes debere succedere 
consentiunt ; quod tamen est contra investiture teno- 

The same question, in connexion with the execution of 
a contemplated entail of the Auchinleck estate, formed 
the subject of an interesting correspondence between 
Dr. Johnson and his biographer, from which it would 
appear that, notwithstanding a decided opinion to the 
contrary by the great moralist (in which both Lord Hailes 
and Lord Auchinleck fully concurred), BoswelTs own par- 
tiality for male succession " remained unshaken/' In the 
month of February 1776, Dr. Johnson writes two long 
letters to " Bozzy," by whom all the difficulties of the 
case had been previously stated ; and, after indicating his 
own views of the subject, strongly urges him to have a 
conference with Lord Hailes, as being " both a lawyer 
and a Christian." " Laws are formed," says the Doctor, 
" by the manners and exigencies of particular times, and 
it is but accidental that they last longer than their 


causes : the limitation of feudal succession to the male 
arose from the obligation of the tenant to attend his 

chief in war If, therefore, you ask by what 

right your father admits daughters to inheritance, ask 
yourself, first, by what right you require them to be 
excluded ? It appears, upon reflection, that your father 
excludes nobody ; he only admits nearer females to in- 
herit before males more remote ; and the exclusion is 
purely consequential." Again, " It cannot but occur that 
'Women have natural and equitable claims as well as 
men, and these claims are not to be capriciously or 
lightly superseded or infringed/ When fiefs implied 
military service, it is easily discerned why females 
could not inherit them ; but that reason is now at an 
end. As manners make laws, manners likewise repeal 
them." 1 

In the well-known Sutherland case (1771), it was 
clearly proved by the learned Lord Hailes that the 
Salic law of France and other kingdoms is not the rule 
in this country, and that by the common law of Scot- 
land at least, every kind of succession, however originally 
masculine in its nature, has been open to heirs-general 
from a very early period. The same views are repeatedly 
expressed by Mr. Riddell, who, at the time of his death 
not many months ago, was pronounced by competent 
judges to be the most eminent legal antiquary in Europe. 

1 On auother occasion, in allusion to the continuance of Thrale's for- 

to Mrs. Thrale's wish to have a son, tune ; for what can misses do with 

the Doctor says, " The desire of male a brewhouse ? Lands are fitter for 

heirs is not appendant only to feudal daughters than trades." Johnson to 

tenures. A son is almost necessary Bosioell, Dec. 21, 1776. 


" At present," he says, " there are in virtue of our various 
Peerage grants, a far larger class of heirs-female to dig- 
nities, 1 than of heirs-male, independently, as has been 
instructed, of the constant devolution of all our older 
(Peerages) to heirs-general, besides the later female de- 
scents, is at best but rusticum judicium numero., non 
pondere, the prior of which tests has been contemned, 
nay reprobated by lawyers, and cannot in the abstract, 
that is, as regards the mere quantity, be confided in ; 
while the latter, the proper relevant test, evidently in 
this alternative, decisively applies in behalf of the heirs- 
female." Again, he remarks, "Patents, I need hardly 
observe, arbitrarily fixing the descent of an honour, 
though in numerous instances likewise in favour <of 
heirs- female, are not a proper criterion. It is our suc- 
cession that must here weigh, when left to common law. 
.... With respect to our Dukedoms alone (he con- 
tinues), innumerable, existing heirs-female take under the 
Ducal patents of Hamilton, Buccleuch, Queensberry, and 
Montrose (as was there at least intended), far more 
than male ; and the Duke of Roxburgh likewise is an 
heir-female." 2 

Even in the case of the Salic law, to which we have 
incidentally referred, the precise principle of succession 
was at one time very keenly debated its strictly mascu- 
line character being boldly challenged by one section of 

1 In his notice of the Order of year 1635. Complete Body of /fer- 
tile Baronets of Nova Scotia, Ed- aldry, vol. i. 

raondson refers to the creation of 2 Low and Practice in Scottish 

a female Baronet, in the person of Peerages, ii. 944. See also Appen- 

Pame (or Lady) Mary Bolles, in the dix, No. A r ii. pp. 1006, et seq. 


rival disputants. We particularly refer to the competi- 
tion for the crown of France, in the fourteenth century, 
between Philip of Valois (afterwards Philip vi.) and 
Edward in. of England, the former being cousin-german 
by the male line to the deceased monarch Charles iv., 
while the latter was his sister's son. Philip pleaded 
that the Salic law excluded from the throne, not only 
daughters themselves but also their descendants, whether 
male or female, and that his opponent could not pretend 
to the crown, as representing only a female. Edward, 
on the other hand, did not ground his claim on the right 
of representation, but insisted on his nearness of blood, 
as the next male heir capable of succeeding. The 
decision, however, as is well known, was unfavourable 
to the English monarch, the subsequent prosecution of 
whose claims was the cause of long-continued warfare 
between the two kingdoms. 

Under a Celtic sway, the Scottish law of succession 
appears to have been what is usually, termed the law of 
Tanistry : a system which implied descent from a com- 
mon ancestor, but which selected a man arrived at an 
age fit for war and council, in preference to the infant 
son or grandson of the preceding chief. 1 In such cir- 
cumstances, therefore, it is obvious that the succession 
was regulated by principles of expediency, and not con- 
fined to any strict preference of the nearest male blood. 

1 Scotland in the Middle Ages, Maorinors of Moray, including the 

p. 176. far-famed Thane Macbeth. See also 

Mr. Innes gives several examples p. 325 of the same volume relative 

of this rule of succession among the to ancient female succession. 


In the case of M'Gillivray, already referred to, an un- 
successful attempt was made by the pursuer (Neil John 
M'Gillivray of Dunnaglass) to exclude the heirs of line 
under a destination of certain lands, on the ground that 
they were not members of the clan Chattan. The defen- 
ders bore various surnames Noble, Souter, M' Arthur, 
M'lntosh and some of them had lately assumed the name 
of M'Gillivray, either from admiration of that appellation 
or in consequence of the condition in the destination, 
which limited the succession to the clan Chattan. The 
pursuer's plea was not founded on the preference of 
male blood. His opponents were all descended from 
females, who had renounced their allegiance to the clan 
by marrying persons not connected with it. The pur- 
suer acknowledged that he also was descended from a 
female, but (in the words of the Lord President) " she 
had not committed that treason by marrying out of the 
clan !" She had married a M'Gillivray, and therefore her 
son, the pursuer, was in a position to claim the estate. 
Another of the learned Lords concluded an elaborate 
opinion with some pertinent remarks relative to the 
" common ancestor." " As regards descent," he observed, 
" which is the only other bond of connexion even sug- 
gested, it seems to me that to refer, as is done in the 
minute, to 'some remote ancestor from whom it was 
supposed the whole tribe was originally descended/ is 
little better for the purposes of a service of heirs, and 
is certainly more indefinite, than to refer to the remote 
ancestor from whom we all claim to be descended, and 
whom it is unnecessary to name To say that 


the whole clansmen are children of somebody unknown, 
is little better, for the present purpose, than to describe 
them, as Sir Walter Scott does elsewhere, as ' children 
of the mist !" As already indicated, the Court declined 
to pronounce decree of declarator in terms of the sum- 
mons, and it was unanimously held that the destination 
contended for could not be recognised, as the term 
" clanship " was incapable of definition, and, as a recog- 
nised institution, was at an end, if not by Statute, at 
least by desuetude. 

Independently of many other instances, the Regal suc- 
cession both in England and Scotland has furnished 
numerous examples of heirs-female. On the one hand, 
we have Stephen, grandson of " The Conqueror," Henry 
ii. first of the Plantagenets, the three first Sovereigns of 
the House of York, Henry vn. first of the Tudors, his 
grand-daughters Mary and Elizabeth, and James i. great- 
grandson of Margaret of England. Again, in Scotland, 
we have Duncan I., Margaret " Maiden of Norway," 
Baliol and Bruce, Robert n. first of the Stewarts, and 
his descendant, the unfortunate Maiy. Finally, in our 
own peaceful times, we have the happiness to be go- 
verned by an illustrious " heir-female," in the person of 
our beloved Queen, Victoria, whom God long preserve ! 
As Mr. Hannay observes, it is somewhat remarkable, "as 
illustrative of the mutability of fortune, that there is not 
a male descendant of one of the twenty-five English 
Barons appointed to enforce the observance of Magna 
Charta, early in the thirteenth century, and that only 
two of the names (Percy and De Roos) occur in the 


present Upper House." 1 Besides these two, however, 
who are both through females (the latter being through a 
co-heiress), he informs us that there are several other de- 
scendants through females, including Lord Hereford, the 
Howards, Lord Saye and Sele, and the Duke of St. Albans. 

Ordinary mortals would probably be inclined to con- 
clude that, of the two parents, there can be less doubt 
respecting a man's mother than his father, which may 
perhaps have been the rationale of the old Pictish law T of 
succession. But notwithstanding " Blackstone's admir- 
able demonstration of the reasonableness of the legal 
succession," our friend "Bozzy" endeavours to justify his 
feudal preference of males by referring to the " opinion 
of some distinguished naturalists, that our species is 
transmitted through* males only, the female being all 
along no more than a nidus, or nurse, as mother Earth 
is to plants of every sort ; which notion seems to be con- 
firmed by that text of Scripture, ' He was yet in the loins 
of his father when Melchisedec met him' (Heb. vii. 10) ; 
and consequently, that a man's grandson by a daughter, 
instead of being his surest descendant, as is vulgarly 
said, has, in reality, no connexion whatever with his 
blood" ! 2 

In the very latest heraldic case that occupied the 
attention of the Court of Session, 3 the abstract question 
of succession was incidentally and most ably argued ; 

1 Essays from Quarterly Review, j>. 2 Bos well's Life of Johnson ; Cro- 

173. See also some interesting obser- ker's Edition, p. 472, note 3. 
rations on " Female Descents " by 

the same able writer in his " British 3 Cuninghame v. Cunyngham, 13th 

Family Histories," Ibid. p. 61. June 1849; 11 D. 1139. 


but, owing to a very remarkable specialty, it was not 
taken into consideration when judgment was pronounced. 
The parties in the action referred to were Sir Robert 
Dick Cunyngham of Prestonfield, Baronet, and his grand- 
nephew, Mr. Smith Cuniiighame, younger of Caprington ; 
the former being the heir-male and a collateral, while 
the latter was heir of line, through his mother, who was 
the eldest of three sisters, heirs-portioners, as shown in 
the pedigree subjoined : 

Sir John Cunyngham, Bart., Sir James Dick, Bart., 

of Lambrughton and Caprington, of Prestonfield, cr. 1707 (first 

cr. 1669. patent, 1677). 

I i 

Sir William Cunyngham, Bart., ob. 1740. Janet Dick (only daughter and heiress). 


Sir John Cunynghani, Bart., 
ob. 1777. 

Sir William Dick, Bart. ; Sir Alexand 
took the Baronetcy of ' 
Prestonfield by special 
destination ; ob. s. p. 1740. 

er Dick, Bart. 


Sir Wm. Cunyngham, SirWm. Dick, Bart., Sir John Diet, Bart., Sir Robert Keith Dick- 
Bart., ob. s. p. 1829. ob. 1796. sue. his nephew ; Cunyngham, Bart. ; sue. 

ob. s. p. 1814. his brother Sir John in 

the Baronetcy of Pres- 

| tonfield, and his cousin, 

Sir Alexander Diet, Anne Dick = John Smith, Esq. Two other Sir William Cunynghani, 

Bart., ob. s. p. 1S08. (paternally 

daughters, in that of Caprington, 
both married. HEIR-MALE of Cunyng- 

Thomas Smith-Curum^w, Esq., ham of 

representing the eldest and ^pr 


It had been expressly declared, in a clause of a private 
Act of Parliament, that " whereas the senior heir of line 
of Sir John Cunyngham, Baronet, of Lambrughton, and 
of Sir James Dick, Baronet, of Prestonfield" (the common 
roots and chiefs of the two families), " has succession to 
all their indivisible heritable rights, not carried from him 
by entail or settlement, and specially, has right to use 


and bear the arms and supporters of his said ancestors- 
Be it therefore enacted, that the said rights and arms are 
hereby reserved entire to such senior heir of line ; and that 
the said Sir Robert Keith Dick, being a younger branch 
of the said families, he and his heirs -male, in taking the 
name of Cunyngham, and arms of Cunyngham of Lam- 
brughton, shall do so with the difference, or mark of 
cadence, in the arms applicable to such junior branch." 
Notwithstanding this enactment, the Lord Lyon assigned 
the family arms and supporters to the heir-male, " with 
the badge of Nova Scotia on a canton" as a mark of differ- 
ence ; but his judgment was advocated to the Court of 
Session, where the Judges of the First Division, confirm- 
ing the interlocutor of the Lord Ordinary, unanimously 
held " 1st, That it is not competent for the Lord Lyon 
to inquire whether the heir of line or the heir-male was 
entitled to the heraldic honours of the family, that ques- 
tion being, in this case, decided by the Act of Parlia- 
ment. 2d, That, under the Act of Parliament, the heir 
of line alone was entitled to supporters, and it was incom- 
petent in the Lord Lyon to grant them to the heir-male. 
3d, That ' the badge of Nova Scotia on a canton' was 
not a mark of cadence, and to assign it as the only dif- 
ference in the coat-of arms, was not a sufficient com- 
pliance with the Statute." It was truly observed by 
Lord Mackenzie, that the clause in the Act already 
quoted was tantamount to a contract between the parties, 
who were probably entitled to enter into any armorial 
agreement, even although it should be considered to be 
" contra bonos mores" of the noble science of Heraldry. 


The effect of such a stipulation upon any other parties 
than those immediately concerned is of course another 
matter, and may perhaps form a subject for discussion in 
some future generation. Speaking of private Acts of 
Parliament, Blackstone distinctly states that " a general 
saving is constantly added, at the close of the bill, of the 
right and interest of all persons whatsoever, except those 
whose consent is (so) given or purchased, and who are 
(therein) particularly named ; though it hath been holden, 
that even if such saving be omitted, the Act shall bind 
none but the parties." 1 

But notwithstanding the express declaration of the 
private Act of Parliament, the opposing counsel in the 
case of Cuninghame could not resist the discussion of the 
abstract question of heraldic succession, which constitutes 
a very interesting portion of their learned pleadings. It 
is argued, on the one hand, by the heir of line, that no 
Salic law prevails in Scotland with regard to peerages 
or heraldic ensigns ; that all honours, whether titular or 
armorial, are in that part of the kingdom indivisible heri- 
table rights, and, as such, go to the eldest co-heiress ; and 
that these rules of succession are amply confirmed both 
by our principal writers on Heraldry and by the prac- 
tice of the Lyon Court. These propositions, on the 
other hand, are generally denied by the heir-male, who 
attaches a very different interpretation to some of the 
passages quoted by his adversary ; and besides main- 
taining that, for the last four centuries, the tendency 
in Scotland has been in favour of male descent, endea- 

1 Commentaries on the Law of England, book ii. chap. xxi. 


vours to establish that the cases adduced by the heir of 
line are to be regarded as exceptional. 

In speculating upon this curious controversy, the ques- 
tion naturally arises, whether a plain and undifferenced 
coat-armorial descends to a man's heirs, according to 
the ordinary rules of heritable succession, or whether 
it happens to be characterized by any peculiarities, in 
consequence of which it can only be inherited by his 
heirs- male. It is distinctly maintained by the heir-male, 
in the case of Cuninghame, not only that his opponent, as 
the son of one of three heirs-portioners and co-heiresses, 
cannot possibly succeed to the principal and undiffer- 
enced arms of his family, but that, even if he had 
happened to represent an only daughter; he would not 
have been entitled to exclude the heir-male from the 
heraldic honours of the common stock. In support of 
the first of these positions, he quotes the following pas- 
sages from Mackenzie, Nisbet, and Guillim : " Albeit, 
among sons," says the first of these writers, " the eldest 
excludes all the younger from the succession, and there- 
fore differences are given for clearing the right of suc- 
cession amongst brothers, yet sisters succeed equally, 
and are heirs-portioners, and so there is no use for 
these differences amongst them, seeing seniority infers 
no privilege." 1 Again, in the language of Nisbet, " all 
nations agree that sisters should carry no marks of 
difference, though they have brothers, and when they 
have no brothers and be heirs-portioners ; yea, although 
the estates, dominion, and dignity come to the eldest 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxi. 


sister." 1 Lastly, according to Guillim, where all the 
issue of the brethren happen to become extinct, and the 
daughters inherit the lands of their ancestor, " they may 
therewithal assume his coat-armour, and bear the same, 
by themselves and their heirs for ever. But betwixt 
those sisters be allowed no differences or badges of 
pedigrees. The .reason whereof is, for that since by 
them the name of the house cannot be preserved, there- 
fore they are admitted to the inheritance equally, and 
are adjudged but one heir, to all intents and purposes, 
in laws as well martial as civil, without any eminent 
prerogative, either of honour or possession, between 
elder and younger." 2 

Nisbet merely states the fact that sisters carry no 
marks of difference, not only when they have brothers or 
when they succeed as heirs-portioners, but even "although 
the estates, dominion, and dignity come to the eldest 
sister." If this assertion of the honest herald had been 
duly supported by proper authority, and could be received 
without any qualification, it would be quite unnecessary 
to investigate the point at issue ; but it must be borne in 
mind that he makes the statement in the course of his ob- 
servations on the use of marks of cadency among brothers 
and sisters, and others in the same degree, and evidently 
without the slightest reference to a competition between 
a lineal heir-female and a collateral heir-male. According 
to Sir George Mackenzie, however, there is no use for 
differences among sisters, " seeing seniority infers no 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 2 Display of Heraldry, section 6, 

iii. p. 20. p. 456. 



privilege," while Guillim assigns, as a reason, that " the 
name of the house cannot be preserved" by them. It is 
hardly necessary to say that the latter explanation is by 
no means satisfactory, and entirely ignores the very 
frequent practice, to be afterwards noticed, by which an 
heiress, in a heraldic sense, confers her surname upon 
her husband. But the announcement of the learned 
Lord Advocate of King Charles II., that " seniority infers 
no privilege," is assuredly open to question ; and so 
thinks the senior heir of line in the Cunninghame case, 
who confidently points to the pages of Lord Stair for a 
very different conclusion. " Heirs-portioners," says that 
celebrated authority, " are amongst heirs of line ; for 
when more women or their issue succeed, failing males 
of that degree, it is by the course of law that they 
succeed ; and because they succeed not in solidum, but 
in equal portions, they are called heirs-portioners ; and 
though they succeed equally, yet rights indivisible fall 
to the eldest alone, without anything in lieu thereof to 
the rest : as 1. The dignity of Lord, Earl, etc.; 2. The 
principal mansion, being tower, fortalice, etc. ; 3. Supe- 
riorities, etc." 1 But the question still remains behind, 
are the heraldic ensigns of a family to be regarded as 
rights indivisible ? Does it follow, a fortiori, or even by 
analogy, that armorial, as well as titular, honours are to 

1 Institutions of the Law of Scot- to the eldest daughter, where there 

land, book iii. tit. 5, 11. are more than one, but remain in 

It is well known that in England abeyance, subject to the deterrnina- 

a different rule prevails with regard tion of the sovereign, who may select 

to titles of honour descendible to any one of the co-heiresses to enjoy 

females, which do not go of right the peerage. 


be included among these peculiar rights ? In one point 
of view, heraldic ensigns do not resemble titles of honour, 
which can only be held by one individual, whereas 
armorial bearings may be indefinitely multiplied by the 
adoption of marks of difference. As a general rule, how- 
ever, the principal arms, or arms in chief (in which, of 
course, supporters are included), can only be lawfully 
carried by the head of the family ; and accordingly, in 
this sense they may be accurately enough described as 
indivisible rights. It is, no doubt, contrary to the usual 
practice of heraldry for daughters to use marks of differ 
ence and during the lifetime of their father or brothers 
they are not supposed to make any pretension to the 
headship of the family but the case under consideration 
implies the failure of heirs-male in the direct line, and a 
consequent competition between a lineal female and a 
collateral male. 

Although the senior heir of line succeeds at common 
law to indivisible heritage, yet, contrary to the opinion 
of Erskine, heirship moveables appear to be divided 
among heirs -portioners. 1 It happens, however, that 
among the various articles included under the head of 
heirship moveables is the family seal of arms? which 
is, of course, incapable of division, and accordingly 
would naturally fall to the lot of the eldest heir-por- 
tioner ; and its possession would seem to constitute 
an argument in her favour for the inheritance of the 

1 Compare Erskine, Book iii. Tit. 2 See Erskine, Book iii. Tit. 8, 

8, 13, with Bell's Principles, 1906. 18. 


principal heraldic honours, in the case under- consider- 
ation. 1 

The seals appended to the charter of foundation of the 
Collegiate Church of St. Bathans, in the year 1421, afford 
an interesting illustration of heraldic precedence being 
ceded to the eldest of the four co-heiresses of Gilford and 
Yester. Sir William Hay, ancestor of the Tweedclale 
family, married the eldest of these co-heiresses, and his 
seal of arms (already referred to), attached to the charter 
in question, exhibits his wife's ensigns quarterly, with his 
paternal arms " surtout ;" while on the seals of the three 
other Barons who married the younger daughters viz., 
Thomas Boyd of Kilmarnock, Eustace Maxwell of Tey- 
ling, and Dougal Macdougal of Mackerston we find 
" nothing but their single paternal coats." 2 Two hundred 
years later, as mentioned by Nisbet, we have an example 
of the preference of the heir of line in the case of a well- 
known northern family. William Seton of Meldrum, 
having no issue by his wife, Anne, daughter of Crichton 
of Frendraught, entailed his estate, failing heirs of his 

1 Corresponding to our lieirship qualitie, to bury any deceased person 

moveables, there are certain personal within the body of the Kirk, where 

chattels which, by the law of Eng- the people meet for hearing of the 

land, descend to the heir, and among Word and administration of the Sa- 

these Blackstone enumerates " an- craments. And als inhibites them 

cient family pictures, or a monument to hing Penslls or Brods, to affixe 

or tombstone in a church, or the coat- Honours or Arms, or to make any 

armour of his ancestor there hungup, suchlike Monuments, to the honour 

with the pennons and other ensigns or remembrance of any deceased per- 

of honour suited to his degree." son, upon walls or other places within 

In the year 1643, the General the Kirk, where the publick worship 

Assembly of the Church of Scotland of God is exercised, as said is." 
passed an Act which " inhibites and 2 See Nisbet's Essay on Armories, 

discharges all persons, of whatsoever p. 98. 


own body, to his grand-nephew, Patrick Urquhart of 
Lethinty, eldest son of the " Tutor of Cromarty" by 
Elizabeth Seton, the entailer's niece ; " esteeming it just 
and reasonable that, as the estate of Meldrum came to 
the name of Seton by a marriage with the heir-female of 
Meldrum of that Ilk, and that the course of succession 
continued settled in the heirs of line for a long time, it 
should in like manner descend to his eldest brother's 
daughter and her heirs, rather than go to an heir-male at 
a greater distance." J 

In his " Reply" to the famous pamphlet entitled 
" Leicester's Commonwealth," in which the descent of the 
Dudleys was attacked, Sir Philip Sydney, as a " sister's 
son" of that distinguished House, indignantly repels the 
allegations, and quaintly vindicates the rights and inter- 
ests of heirs-female. Speaking of his maternal grand- 
father, the Duke of Northumberland, he says, " His 
mother was a right Grai, and a sole inheritor of [by] 
that Grai of the Hows of Warwick, which ever strove 
with the great Hows of Arundel, which should be the 
first Earl of England : he was lykewise so descended as 
that justily the Honour of the Hows remained chiefli 
upon him, being the only heir to the eldest daughter ; 
and one of the heirs to the famous Beauchamp, Earl of 
Warwick, that was Eegent of France ; and although 
Richard Nevel, who married the youngest sister, becaws 
she was of the hole blood to him that was called Duke 
of Warwick, by a point in our Law carried away the 
Enheritance, and so also, I know not by what right, the 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. il. Appendix, p. 1-25. 


Tytle ; yet in Law of Heraldri and Descentes, which 
doth not consider those Quiddities of our Law, it is most 
certain that the Honour of the blood remained uppon 
him chiejti who came of the eldest Daughter. And more 
undoubtedly it is to be said of the Hows of Barklei, 
which is affirmed to be descended lineally of a King of 
Denmark, but hath ever been one of the best Howses in 
England ; and this Duke was the oneli Heir-general to 
that Hows, which the Hows of Barklei doth not deny, 
howsoever, as sometymes it fals out between Brothers, 
there be question for Land between them. Many other 
Howses might herein be mentioned, but I name these 
becaws England can boast of no nobler, and becaws all 
these Bloods so remained in him, that he, as Heir, might 
(if he had listed) have used their Armes and Name, as in 
old tyme they used in England, and do daili both in 
Spain, France, and I tali : So that I think it would seeme 
as great News as if thei came from the Indies, that he 
who, by Eight of Blood, and so accepted, was the awn- 
cientest Viscount of England ; Heir in Blood and Armes 
to the first or second Earl of England ; in Blood of In- 
heritance, a Grai, a Talbot, a Beauchamp, a Barklei, a 
Lislai (Lisle), should be doubted to be a Gentleman. 
But he will say these great Honors came to him by his 
Mother. For these, I do not deny they came so ; and 
that the Mother being an Heir hath been in all ages and 
contreis sufficient to nobilitat is so manifest, that, even 
from the Roman Tyme to modern Tymes, in such case, 
they might, if they listed, and so often did, use their 
Mother's Name; and that Augustus Caesar had both 


Name and Empyre of Csesar only by his Mother's 
Ryght, and so both Moderns." (That is, both name and 

After noticing those armorial bearings which are merely 
personal, and which, accordingly, do not descend to a 
man's successors, Sir George Mackenzie adds, that " if 
successors be not secluded, then arms descend to his 
heirs, though they be not expressed. . . . But when 
they are given by the Prince to a man, or to his poste- 
rity, then his successors who are descended of him do 
carry the arms, and have right thereto, and that though 
they renounce to be heirs, because these are marks of 
their Prince's favour, and no lucrative parts of succes- 
sion ; and therefore, possible it is, that our nobility bear 
the titles and enjoy the honours of their predecessors, 
though they renounce to be heirs, and though these hon- 
ours and titles were given at first to their predecessors 
and their heirs." The learned author then discusses the 
question regarding the right of women to carry arms, 
which he has no difficulty in deciding in the affirmative, 
and he refers to the common practice in Scotland (to be 
afterwards noticed) of entailing an estate on the eldest 
heir-female, whose husband is usually required to bear 
the name and arms of the disponer's family. In the 
course of his observations he says, " Whether agnail 
transversales, such as nephews, etc., have right to carry 
the arms that are given by the Prince to their uncle 
and those of his family, may be doubted ; and that 
they may, is concluded by the doctors, nam aynati 
intelliguntur e-sse de familia ; but if the arms be 


granted to a man and those descending of his body, 
they will thereby, or by any such express concession, be 
secluded." 1 

Without being able to deduce any positive conclusion 
from these rather indefinite statements, at any rate it is 
tolerably clear that they contain nothing very detri- 
mental to the claim of the female heir of line in compe- 
tition with the collateral heir-male. In the first passage 
quoted, the learned author uses the general term .heir, 
without any qualification ; and it is also important to 
notice, in connexion with some of our previous remarks, 
that he seems to place the succession to titular and armo- 
rial honours in the same category. 

Two passages are quoted from Nisbet by the heir of 
line, in the case of Cuninghame, in support of his right 
to the principal arms of his family. The first of these 
occurs in the chapter devoted to the consideration of 
" Exterior Ornaments," and declares " that the right of 
using supporters is hereditary with us in the lineal heirs 
and representatives of families " to which, however, the 
author adds, " but not to the younger sons of collaterals, 
unless they become representatives of the family." 5 But 
the heir-male does not admit the inference which is drawn 
from these words by his opponent, and positively denies 
that Nisbet, in writing them, had in view the question, 
whether heirs of line or heirs-male were to be preferred 
in the succession to the family ensigns. The other pas- 
sage is from that portion of the same author's " System" 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxi. 

2 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part iv. p. 33,. 


in which he treats of marks of cadency. " With us (he 
says), the plain lambel with three points is seldom 
assigned to younger brothers ; but when the heirs-male 
of the eldest brother fail, and the inheritance falls to his 
daughters and their heirs, the younger brother and his 
issue may then use the plain lambel of three points, as the 
heir of expectancy." l 

Neither of these passages, however, owing to their in- 
cidental and parenthetical character, can be considered 
very satisfactory or conclusive. Although in matters 
which are purely heraldic, and which relate to the proper 
combinations and marshalling of armorial bearings, no 
writer upon the " noble science " can be consulted with 
greater advantage than Nisbet, on the other hand, it 
must be admitted that his rather loose and inelegant 
language cannot always be very safely appealed to for 
the settlement of any nice or controverted point, especi- 
ally if it happens to involve anything approaching to a 
question of law. But while the Scottish herald himself 
does not appear to make any very full or distinct state- 
ment respecting the subject under consideration, in his 
separate essay on Marks of Cadency he refers to an 
important passage in Dugdale, which assuredly seems to 
favour the argument of the female heir of line, and 
which it is advisable to introduce without mutilation or 
abridgement : "A label/' says the Garter King-of-Arms, 
" being much in use for the heir apparent (to wear as his 
difference during his father's life) was seldom removed 
to the second brother, but when the inheritance went 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part iii. p. 7. 


unto the daughters of the elder brother ; and then the 
second was permitted to bear the same for his difference, 
as being the heir-male of his family and as one that 
remained in expectancy ; yet might not the second 
brother use to intrude himself into the absolute signs of 
his house (the inheritance being in his nieces or kins- 
women) as appeared in the case between Gray of Ruthin 
and Hastings (protracted from the reign of Richard n. 
1377, to that of Henry vi. 1422), which was this : 
John Lord Hastings married to his first wife Izabel one 
of the sisters and heirs of Almery de Vallence, Earl of 
Pembroke, by whom he had issue John Hastings (after 
Earl of Pembroke), Elizabeth (married to Roger Lord 
Gray of Ruthin), and some other children which needs 
not be spoken of ; for that, as I take it, all the lines of 
them failed before the extinguishing of the line of the 
said John Earl of Pembroke. After (such issue being 
had) the said Izabel Vallence died, and the said John 
Lord Hastings took to a second wife Izabel, the daughter 
of Hugh Spenser, by whom he had issue Hugh Hastings 
and Thomas, and then died, and left as heir John his son 
by his first wife (who was Earl of Pembroke, as I have 
said, erected by reason of his mother's inheritance) which 
John Earl of Pembroke married and had issue another 
Earl of Pembroke, who also married and had issue a 
third Earl of Pembroke ; but in the end all the line of 
the said John Hastings (first Earl of Pembroke of that 
family) failing, there arose a question betwixt the heirs 
of Roger Gray and Elizabeth his wife, being sister (of 
the whole blood) and the heirs of Hugh Hastings brother 


(of the half blood) to the said John Earl of Pembroke, 
for the inheritance of the Hastings. 

1 2 

Izabel de Vallence John Lord Hastings ==r Izabel Spenser, 
sister and co-heir 
of Almery Earl of 

I I 

John Hastings, Elizabeth Hastings = Roger, Lord Gray Hugh Hastings. 
Earl of Pern- : ofKuthin. 

broke, whose 
line ultimately 

Reinold, Lord Gray of Ruthin, Sir Edward Hastings, 

But Gray recovering the same (by the law that saith 
Possessio fratris de feodo simplici sororem esse 
heredem) called the said Hastings also (having removed 
the difference of his mark for that he was then heir-male 
of that house) into the Court of Chivalry, and there 
having a judgment against him (c. 1408), the said 
Hastings was compelled to use a difference (which was 
a label of silver) upon his mark, a fair red sleeve of his 
lady's upon his golden vesture j 1 since which the heirs of 
that younger family have used the said label even until 
this our age. So that you may see by this, that the law 
was then taken to be such, that such an heir-male as 
had not the inheritance of his ancestors should not be 
suffered to bear his mark without distinction ; for it 
should seem (by this) that the issue of them that had 
married the heir general of any family (being by reason 

1 In heraldic language, or, a niaunch gules. 

"A lady's sleeve high sprighted Hastyngs bore." 

(Drayton's Baron's War, i. 22.) 


thereof possessed of the lands) had not only an interest, 
in the arms, but might also forbid any man the bearing 
thereof." 1 

Here then it must be observed that the competition was 
not between a female heir of line and a collateral heir- 
male, but between the representatives of a sister of the 
full, and a brother of the half blood, the former of whom 
was preferred in the succession to the heraldic honours. 2 
No doubt the possession of the ancestral acres seems to be 
taken into account by Dugdale as affecting the right to 
the "absolute signs of the house;" 3 but he also distinctly 
alludes to the important circumstance of the successful 
competitor having sprung from the marriage of the heir- 
general. It is almost superfluous to remark that a coat- 
armorial does not necessarily imply a corresponding 
family estate, which, if it ever existed at all, may have 
passed into the hands of a stranger ; and therefore it is 
pretty clear that the decision of the question at issue- 
must depend upon some principle of general application. 

1 Ancient Usacje of Arms, p. 28. Derby, and afterwards the Dukes of 

2 " The sister of the whole blood Athol, quartered the arms of Man, 
is preferred in descents before the (three conjoined legs in armour) as 
brother of the half blood, because lords of that island, while the Duke 
more strictly joy ned to the brother of Hamilton -quarters the ensigns of 
of the whole blood (viz., by the the earldom of Arran, and the Duke 
father and mother) than the brother, of Argyll, those of the lordship of 
though otherwise more worthy, of Lorn, being in both instances a 
the half-blood." (Sir M. Hale, De lymphad or ancient galley. In like 
Successionibus apud Anglos, 1700.) manner, the three garbs (or wheat- 

3 Hereditary arms of families must sheaves) of the earldom of Buchan 
not be confounded with feudal en- have been carried by the families of 
signs, which are annexed to certain Cumin, Stewart, Seton, Douglas, and 
lordships and estates, and carried by Erskine, either as holding, or pre- 
their possessors. Thus the Earls of tending to, that ancient dignity. 


Accordingly, in the absence of any very distinct autho- 
rity on either side, it does not appear unreasonable to 
argue from analogy, and to adopt the guidance of the 
common law of Scotland which regulates the succession 
to lands and dignities. Failing male issue, we have 
already seen that in the case of dignities and other in- 
divisible rights, where there happens to be more than 
one daughter, the preference is given to the eldest, who 
also inherits the prcecipuum of the estate in the shape 
of the castle or mansion-house, thus clearly establishing 
that her seniority does infer certain important privileges : 
and, again, where there is only one daughter, no division 
even of the lands is necessary, as she succeeds to the 

Leaving their ingenious inferences and deductions, the 
contending parties, in the case of Cuninghame, point to 
various actual instances of heraldic succession in corro- 
boration of their respective claims. The heir of line 
enumerates the royal House of Stuart, the ducal families 
of Hamilton, Buccleuch, Queensberry, Roxburgh, and 
Sutherland, the earldoms of Rothes, Errol, Loudon, Dy- 
sart, Seafield, and Orkney, and the baronies of Saltoun, 
Gray, Sempill, Napier, Nairn, and Polwarth a very 
respectable catalogue as all being represented by the 
female heir of line. He then turns to the Lyon Records 
for other similar examples, such as the Mowbrays of 
Barnbougal and the Napiers of Merchiston ; and shows 
that the various male cadets of the latter family adopted 
proper heraldic differences, while the principal arms and 
supporters were carried by the heiress of line, who, in 


1699, was married to Sir William Scott of Thirlstane. 
As more modern instances, he adduces the Farquharsons 
of Invercauld, the Clerk-Kattra ys of Craighall, the L' Amys 
of Dunkenny, the Gibson-Craigs of Biccarton, the Heriots 
of Bamornie, and the Gibsons of Pentlancl, there being a 
baronetcy in the last of these families, which devolved 
upon the heir-male. 

Against these formidable examples, the heir -male 
brings forward, in support of his view of the question, 
the cases of the Marquis of Queensberry, Anstruther of 
that Ilk, Macleod of Macleod, Munro of Foulis, and Mac- 
pherson of Cluny, in all of which the female heir of line 
appears to have been excluded from the principal her- 
aldic honours. He also maintains that the instances 
cited by his opponent are exceptions to the general rule, 
and challenges him to prove that in any of them the 
heir-male of the family had ever claimed and been refused 
his ancestral ensigns. But, in noticing the case of Buc- 
cleuch, he supposes the existence of an heir-male at the 
time when the family coat-armorial was assumed by the 
heir of line, and goes on to say that " it was not expe- 
dient, nor perhaps quite safe, for the heir-male, with not 
a rood of land, to beard * the bold Buccleuch' at the 
head of his border foUowers. Indeed, we may fairly 
admit that feudal arms must, in many cases, follow the 
other feudal inheritance, and that a person (though not 
the male heir) enjoying the family barony, bearing the 
noble title, leading the vassals in war, and dispensing jus- 
tice among them in peace, was at first naturally looked 
upon as chief, and entitled to the chief insignia upon his 


coat-armour ; and in the course of a few generations, from 
father to son, the use of these established the right to use 
them. In most cases, the legally preferable heirs-male 
did not object to the expedient arrangement. He would 
have been a fool who, for so visionary an interest, would 
have severed the connexion that united all families of the 
name under the banner of the princely house of Hamil- 
ton, and made the Scotts so powerful when banded ' for 
Branxholme/ though in both cases the head of the family 
was not the heir-male of the name." l Again, in com- 
menting upon the case of Invercauld, in the absence of 
all information as to the grounds of the claim, he says 
that he considers himself entitled to presume, not only 
that Mrs. Farquharson was at the head of a great undi- 
vided estate and ancient barony, and that no heir-male 
had opposed her petition, but also that she claimed the 
family arms, not as in right of descent, but ex gratia 
of the Lord Lyon, " and that the grant of supporters was 
made to her, rather in respect of her position, than preT 
cisely of her pedigree." '' 

There can be no doubt, moreover, that, at least in 
recent times, the opinions of the authorities of the Lyon 
Office are in favour of the heir-male. According to the 
supplementary deposition of Mr. David Clyne, interim 
Lyon-Clerk, dated 6th July 1821, "by the practice of 
the Office, a grant of arms is destined to the grantee and 

1 Printed Papers in case of dining- Farquharson chieftainship has re- 
hame, p. 44. Se-nsion Cases, vol. 440, cently been very keenly discussed 
No. 187. in the columns of the Edinburgh 

2 Ibid. p. 132. The subject of the newspapers. 


the heirs-male of his body, and so descends accordingly." 1 
In like manner, in the Note of persons considered by Mr. 
Tait to be entitled to supporters,. we find the privilege 
expressly confined to " lawful heirs-male of the bodies" 
of the lesser Barons, and of those private gentlemen 
whose right has been established by immemorial usage, 
and to " lawful heirs-male of chiefs of tribes and clans." 
In the same place, it is also stated that " no females 
(except peeresses in their own right) are entitled to sup- 
porters, as the representation of families is only in the 
male line." Accordingly, in the year 1829, although the 
father of the successful competitor in the case of Cun- 
inghame was rather strangely allowed by the Lord Lyon 
to use the plain, undifFerenced arms of both Cuninghame 
and Dick, in right of his wife, as heiress of line, his peti 
tion for supporters " was refused, as being founded on 
a misapprehension of the rules of heraldry, and the prac- 
tice of the Lyon Court." In a note appended to that 
decision, the Lyon-Depute states, that in all cases where 
the distinction of supporters has been enjoyed, " the 
right to such distinction passes, not to the heir of line, 
but to the nearest heir-male of the family, even though 
a distant collateral, provided he can establish his descent ; 
but, in the present case, Sir Robert Keith Dick is the 
direct lineal heir-male of the body of the first Baronet 
of Caprington, whereas Mrs. Smith Cuninghame is only 
the heir of line. A grant of supporters to her, therefore, 
or to her husband in her right, would be repugnant to 
all the laws and usages of Heraldry." But enough has 

1 Report on the Lyon Court (1822), p. 52. 


probably been advanced to show that no such limited 
succession is expounded by our heraldic authorities, and 
that even in the course of the present century numerous 
instances of contradictory procedure have occurred in the 
practice of the Lyon Office. 

Although the dispute in the case of was 
decided solely in accordance with the distinct injunction 
of a private Act of Parliament ; and although the Court 
unanimously expressed its satisfaction that the point at 
issue did not require to be determined by " the common 
law of heraldry," more than one of the Judges thought 
proper to give an indication of their opinions on the 
abstract question of succession. In the long and able 
note appended to his interlocutor, the Lord Ordinary 
(Robertson) throws out various incidental observations 
which clearly show a pretty strong tendency towards the 
views of the heir of line. The " abstract question," says 
his Lordship, " of the legal succession to heraldic honours 
is argued by the advocator (the heir of line), in the con- 
cluding part of his case, with great force and much 
learning, and, so far as he is qualified to judge of such 
matters, the Lord Ordinary is inclined to go along with 
that argument." Again, in noticing the allegation of 
the respondent, " that the heir-male cannot be a younger 
branch, but must be the head of the house, and an elder 
branch to the senior heir of line," he remarks that " he 
does not think this established by any authorities on 
heraldry." At the conclusion of his note, however, his 
Lordship " begs it to be explicitly understood, that his 
judgment proceeds upon his view of the Statute ; and 



although lie has ventured to express his impressions on 
the argument which has been adduced on the heraldic; 
branch of the subject, he does so without any confidence, 
and without resting the grounds of his opinion upon 
these impressions." 

In like manner, in the Inner House, while the Lord 
President (Boyle) and Lord Mackenzie positively de- 
cline to give the slightest intimation of their views on 
the abstract question of succession, the two other learned 
Lords indicate their opinions on the subject in terms 
that could hardly be mistaken. On the one hand, Lord 
Fullerton remarks that, " if we had been obliged to enter 
into the wider field, embracing the descent of heraldic 
honours at common law, if such an expression is allow- 
able, I am by no means prepared to assent to the pro- 
position so broadly laid down by the advocator, that in 
every case in which the holder of such honours dies, 
leaving a collateral heir-male, and a daughter or daugh- 
ters his heirs of line, the honours will go to the daughters 
and their descendants, and that the heir-male will take 
them only under a brisure or mark of cadency. Speaking 
with all due diffidence on such a mystery, I must say 
that the cases put and referred to by the advocator, do 
not by any means bear out that proposition." On the 
other hand, Lord Jeffrey indicates what may be termed 
a middle view, suggesting that there is perhaps no in- 
flexible rule in heraldry, the preference being given to 
the heir of line or the heir-male according to circum- 
stances. " It certainly," says his Lordship, " is a novel 
and curious question, and I confess, that if it had arisen 


in the abstract form, it would have very much embar- 
rassed me. The respondent said that the plain common- 
sense view of the matter was in favour of the right of 
the heir-male. If I may be permitted to take a common- 
sense view, I should say that there is neither an in- 
flexible rule nor a uniform practice in the matter. There 
may be cases where the heir of line will exclude the 
heir-male, and there may be cases where the converse 
will be held. In my opinion the common-sense rule is, 
that the chief armorial dignities should follow the more 
substantial rights and dignities of the family. If the 
heir-male succeed to the title and estates, I think it 
reasonable that he should also succeed to the armorial 
bearings of the head of the house. I would think it a 
very difficult proposition to establish that the heir of 
line, when denuded of everything else, was still entitled 
to retain the barren honours of heraldry. But I give no 
opinion upon that point." 1 

It is clear, therefore, from what has been stated, that 
the subject under discussion is attended with considerable 
difficulty, and affords abundant scope for argument and 
inference on both sides. If the accidental possession of 
a title or an estate, or any other special circumstance, is 
to be taken into account, it is manifest that almost every 
case of competition must be decided on its own peculiar 
grounds, and such, indeed, appears to have been the 
usual mode of settlement. If, again, we should be able 

1 The course followed by the Lord in the case under consideration, has 
Lyon with reference to the matricula- been already stated, in connexion 
tion of the arms of the rival claimants with the question of supporters. 


to discover some principle of universal application, alto- 
gether independent of titles and estates, and which 
would not necessarily be affected by the destination of 
the one or the entail of the other, it is obvious that 
anomalies would frequently occur, whether it be deter- 
mined to give the preference to the heir-male or to the 
female heir of line. Although we originally entertained 
a pretty strong opinion in favour of the heir-male, we 
must candidly acknowledge an increasing tendency to 
the opposite conclusion, as has already been indicated in 
the course of the preceding observations. The represen- 
tation of an ancient family is regularly transmitted from 
father to son for many generations, but at length, 
through failure of direct male issue, a female becomes 
the heiress of line, while a remote collateral succeeds to 
the position of heir-male. Is it contrary to reason and 
common sense to prefer the former in the succession to 
the principal heraldic honours 1 If she remains un- 
married, she of course retains her paternal surname and 
arms, and represents the family. If, however, she should 
become " vestita viro" the adoption by her husband of 
her surname and arms ought to be an indispensable 
condition of the union, in order that both may be 
preserved in the persons of their descendants. Such a 
provision, as we shall afterwards have occasion to ob- 
serve, is frequently introduced into entails and other 
deeds of settlement ; but it is necessary to advert to 
those cases where the possession of an estate is not 
dependent upon any special condition, or where the 
heiress of line inherits the armorial ensigns of her family 


unaccompanied by any substantial rights. Should her 
husband be a younger son, or should he belong to a wide- 
spread clan bearing an inconveniently common name, 
even where there is no estate in question, he will pro- 
bably not hesitate to abandon his paternal arms and 
surname. If, on the other hand, he should happen to 
represent some family of distinction, his own surname 
and arms may be both retained and transmitted to his 
posterity along with those of his wife, in accordance 
with common heraldic practice. No doubt it would be 
easy to adduce an instance much less favourable to the 
claim of the heir of line. Instead of the heir-male being 
a remote collateral, he might, for example, be the pater- 
nal uncle of the heir of line ; but in looking for a rule 
of universal application, we ought, of course, not to 
be influenced by the peculiar circumstances of certain 
special cases. As already indicated, however, by one of 
the learned Lords in his opinion on the case of Cuning- 
hame, the practice in the matter in question has been 
far from uniform ; and accordingly we are very much 
disposed to go along with his relative suggestion that 
"the chief armorial dignities should follow the more 
substantial rights and dignities of the family;" and that 
when the latter are enjoyed by the female heir of line, 
such heir should also be regarded as fairly entitled to 
claim the principal heraldic honours. 



VARIOUS rules are laid down by heraldic writers re- 
garding the use and marshalling of " Arms of Adoption." 
According to Sir John Feme, " if the heir, a stranger, be 
of more noble blood and family than the adopter, he is 
then not obliged by the testament to disuse his own name 
and arms, but may quarter the arms of the disponer, if 
he pleases, after his own." Again, " if the heir be of 
inferior blood and dignity, he is obliged to leave his own 
name altogether, as also his proper arms, except he mar- 
shal them after the adopter or disponer's arms." 1 In 
such cases, however, it does not appear that the actual 
practice is affected by the comparative nobility of blood, 
but depends entirely upon the conditions which regulate 
the succession. Accordingly, we learn from Sir George 
Mackenzie that, in the opinion of the most learned anti- 
quaries arid lawyers, " when a person leaves his estate to 
another, upon condition that he should bear the dis- 
poner's name and arms, he who is to succeed is not by 
condition obliged to lay aside his own name and arms, 
but may quarter his own arms with those of the disponer, 

1 Glory of Generositie, p. 302. 


except the disponer do, in the institution, prohibit the 
bearing of any arms beside his own. And the heir, in 
marshalling his own and the disponer's arms, may use 
what order he pleases, by giving the first quarter either 
to his own or to the disponer's, except the contrary be 
expressed in the institution." l 

The injunction to use a particular surname and desig- 
nation, with the relative arms, although not necessarily 
confined to them, is generally to be found in deeds of 
entail ; and it is held to be an effectual condition, if duly 
fenced by irritant and resolutive clauses. " Sometimes 
the offspring of vanity," says Professor Bell, " it may be 
intended to prevent the accumulation of several entailed 
estates in one person, and the sinking of the name and 
family of the entailer." 5 Thus, a case is reported to have 
occurred towards the end of the seventeenth century, in 
which an entail of certain lands was made by a father to 
his three daughters successive (on the narrative that " his 
estate of Stevenson had been very ancient in that name, 
albeit not great"), upon condition that, if the eldest did 
not marry one who should assume the name (and arms) 
of the family, the next should succeed. The eldest 
daughter having failed to do so, it was found that the 
next might serve herself heiress of entail, even although 
there was no irritant clause. 3 

The heir is sometimes required to bear the surname 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxiv. a somewhat similar provision, of a 

- Principles of the Law of Scot- still more striugent character, in the 

land, 4th edition, 1725. marriage-contract of Hugh, fifth Earl 

3 Stevenson v. Stevenson, 26th of Eglinton, dated 1(504. Eraser's 

July 1677; Mor. Diet. 15,475. See Memorials of the Montgomeries, i. 55. 


and arms of the entailer exclusive of any other, but iii 
practice it occasionally happens that this condition is not 
very strictly fulfilled. There can be no doubt, however, 
that if fenced by irritant and resolutive clauses, such 
condition will be effectual ; and failure to comply with 
the injunction would render the heir in possession liable 
to challenge by the next person in the order of succes- 
sion. In one of the earliest recorded entails Craufurd 
of Auchinames, 1695 * we find an example of the exclu- 
sive condition in question. The deed provides " that the 
said haill airs male and of tailzie and provision respective 
above written, alsweel male as female, who shall succeed 
in the foresaid lands and estate, be vertue of the tailzie 
and substitution above mentioned, shall be holden, 
astricted, and oblidged, and be the acceptation hereof 
binds and obliges them, to bear, use, and carrie the name 
and arms of Craufurd of Auchinames, and s no other name 
or arms, in all time coming. . . . Q r in if they failzie, 
the partie failzieor or contravenor, whether male or 
female, shall forfault, amitt, and tyne their right and 
succession of ye foresaid lands and estate." If the heir 
in possession, under such a condition, should succeed to 
another estate similarly entailed, he would probably re- 
quire " to make his election," as he could not consist- 
ently take both of the estates. The possibility of such a 
contingency is distinctly contemplated in the Craighall 
entail, 1718, 2 which contains the following provision : 
" Likeas it is hereby provided, that in case any of my 
heirs of tailzie shall happen to succeed to such ane other 

1 Register of Entails, vol. i. f. 173. 2 Ibid. vol. v. f. 248. 


estate as shall oblidge them to use and carry any other 
name and armes than the said name and armes of Hope 
of Craighall, and that therefore they will not accept of 
the said name and armes of Hope of Craighall, in manner 
foresaid, within the space of one year and day after the 
decease of the next and immediat preceding heir of tailzie 
to whom they may succeed ; that then and in that case, 
the said heirs so not accepting of the benefit of the pre- 
sent tailzie shall also forfeitt and amitt their right of 


The Lyon Register furnishes a very recent example of 
the exclusive condition under consideration. In the year 
1857, we meet with an entry relative to the armorial 
ensigns of Miss Christina Guthrie of Mount, in the county 
of Ayr, only child and heir of tailzie of the late Alex- 
ander Guthrie of Mount, by Christina, daughter of John 
Marshall, coahnaster at Gilmerton, near Edinburgh ; 
" which Alexander was believed to have been paternally 
descended from the Rev. John Guthrie, minister of Tar- 
bolton prior to 1662, and who, it is understood, was 
paternally connected with the family of Guthrie of 
Guthrie, in the county of Forfar." In terms of the 
entail executed by the father of the patentee, the heirs 
of tailzie and the husbands of heirs-female are required 
" to assume and thereafter to use, bear, and constantly 
retain the surname, arms, and designation of Guthrie of 
Mount as their proper and only surname, arms, and de- 
signation ;" and the following arms are illuminated in a 
lozenge, the usual provision being made for a crest and 
motto, in the event of heirs-male : Quarterly, first and 


fourth, or, a lion rampant, gules, armed and langued, 
azure, surmounted by a fess, argent, charged with a 
mount, between two edock leaves, vert : second and 
third, azure, three garbs, or. Three years afterwards, 
in consequence of his marriage to the heiress of Mount, 
we find the same arms entered as those of the Hon. 
Geoffrey Dominick Augustus Frederick Guthrie (formerly 
Browne) of Mount, afterwards Lord Oranmore the 
crest and motto provided for his wife's heirs-male being 
embraced in the relative blazon, viz., a dexter hand, 
erect, holding a sword in bend, all proper, with the 
legend, " Sto pro veritate." 1 Again, about the same 
date (i860), we have an instance of the , exclusive con- 
dition extending only to the arms the assumed surname 
being added to the patronymic in the case of the Rev. 
Michael Maxwell-Heron (formerly Michael Heron Max- 
well) of Heron, in the Stewartry of Kirkcudbright, second 
surviving son of the deceased Sir John Shaw Heron 
Maxwell of Heron and Springkell, by the daughter and 
heiress of Patrick Heron of that Ilk ; the relative blazon 
being as follows, but not embracing any portion of the 
Maxwell coat : Argent, two lions rampant affronte, 
supporting betwixt their paws a rose, gules, stalked and 
leaved, vert. 2 

When the heir is not required to bear the name and 
arms of the entailer exclusive of any other, unless other- 
wise enjoined, he may either add or prefix the assumed 
surname to his own, the relative arms being disposed in 
his escutcheon according to his discretion. The various 

1 Lyon Register, v. 99, and vi. 24. 2 Ibid. vi. 30. 


modes of procedure adopted in such cases will be men- 
tioned in the following chapter relative to the assumption 
of names and arms. Sometimes, however, in the absence 
of such exclusive condition, special provision is made 
respecting the position of the new surname and relative 
arms. Thus, in the Blackball entail, recorded in 1V90, 1 
it is " provided and declared that the said John Shaw 
Stewart and the whole other heirs above mentioned, and 
the husbands of the daughters or heirs-female, who shall 
happen to succeed to the lands, baronies, and others as 
aforesaid, shall always be obliged to assume, use, and 
bear the surname of Stewart, and the arms and desig- 
nation of Stewart of Blackball, as the last surname and 
arms they carry." Occasionally, express permission is 
granted to the heirs called to the succession to use more 
than one surname, with the relative coat-armorial, as in 
a recently recorded entail Monro of Allan, 1862 
which, after enjoining the use and retention of the sur- 
name of Monro, and the arms and designation of Monro 
of Allan, contains the following proviso: "Without 
prejudice to the using and retaining along therewith any 
other surname, arms, and designation" 

In many instances, it is well known that, in the ab- 
sence of all condition and stipulation, the armorial bear- 
ings of an heiress are not only not adopted by her 
husband in lieu of his own, but are not even quartered 
with them ; and, where she happens to be the last of an 
ancient family, it is certainly a matter of regret that its 
heraldic honours should be allowed to perish. It is, how- 

1 Register of Entails, vol. xxv. f. 334. 


ever, a common practice in Scotland, according to Sir 
George Mackenzie, " not to quarter the heiress' coat, but 
to take a part of it into the husbands paternal shield. 
Thus, Hamilton of Innerwick (already referred to) did 
take the fess-checquy when he married Stuart, heiress of 
Bancrief ; and this seems very proper, when the husband 
is not tied to bear the father in-law's arms by talzie or 
express paction." 1 

The same author further remarks, that " it is most 
ordinary in Scotland to entail estates by the eldest heir- 
female, she marrying one who shall bear the name and 
arms of the disponer's family ; but whether the person 
who marries that heretrix or heiress, as the English 
speak, may lawfully carry the disponer's arms, according 
to the laws of Heraldry, wants not its scruple, seeing 
arma gentilitia, which are presumed still to be granted 
to a man and his heirs, non transeunt ad extraneos, else 
any man might give arms, as well as the Prince or 
heralds : Yet lawyers are very positive that their pac- 
tions are lawful, et qui liberos non habit, potest in alium 
transferre suum feudum ea conditione, ut adoptatus 
nomen et arma et insignia ferut ; and that because 
arms are given, not only to reward the receiver's virtue, 
but to distinguish families, et quia adoptatus transit in 
familiam et agnationem adoptantis. Some lawyers do 
here distinguish betwixt him who is so assumed or 
adopted by one of his own predecessors or family (for 
these surely may bear the arms of the adopter), and those 
who were strangers before the adoption ; and they con- 

1 ficience of Fferaldr;/, chap. xxiv. 


elude that these cannot have a right to the arms : And 
this is asserted by Hoppiugius to be the common opinion 
of the best lawyers ; but I think it may be more justly 
distinguished, whether the disposition be made to a 
daughter, she marrying one who shall bear the name and 
arms, for in that case certainly the children may bear 
the arms, for she was heiress herself ; but if lands were 
disponed to a mere stranger, not upon condition that he 
should marry a daughter, but that he should bear the 
name and arms, it may be in that case asserted, that the 
receiver of the disposition cannot bear the arms, for that 
was not in the disponer's power to bestow, except the 
Prince consent." l 

A provision relative to the marriage of daughters to 
persons either actually bearing the name and arms of the 
disponer's family, or who shall be obliged to do so, is of 
frequent occurrence in Scottish entails. Thus, in the 
early entail of Gordon of Gordonstown, 169 *7, 2 it is 
provided that, in the event of the succession devolving 
upon any daughter, " if she shall not be married at the 
tyrne, she shall be holden and oblidged to marry a gentle- 
man of the surname of Gordon or of any other surname, 
who, and the aires male or female descending of her, 
shall assume and bear the surname of Gordon, and the 
atchievements and armoriall ensignes pertaining to and 
presently borne by me (the entailer) perpetually there- 
after ; and in case she be married the tyme of her suc- 
cession to a husband of any other surname, then and 
immediately thereafter he* and the aires male or female 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xxi. 2 Register of Entails, vol. ii. f. 163. 


descending of that marriage, and succeeding to my estate 
be vertue of this present taillie, shall be holden and 
oblidged to assume and bear the surname of Gordon, in 
all tyme comeing, with my proper coat of armes." In 
the Duke of Argyll's entail, recorded in the year 1704, 1 
the female heir, in terms of one of the conditions of her 
succession, is " holden and obliged" to marry " a gentle- 
man of quality of the surname of Campbell, or any 
other surname suitable to her rank and degree ; and the 
heirs of tailie above mentioned, as well male as female, 
and the said heirs female their husbands succeeding to 
the rights of the said lands and estates of Argyll shall 
be holden, obliged, and restricted to assume, take, and 
retain the surname of Campbell, and to bear, carry, and 
use the name and arms of the house and family of 

Every one must admit the propriety of recognising a 
very marked distinction between the two cases to which 
Sir George Mackenzie refers. In the one instance, the 
name and designation, as well as the arms of the dis- 
poner, are borne by a stranger, as the inevitable con- 
sequence of his marriage to the heiress of line ; while in 
the other, the succession is altogether independent of 
such matrimonial alliance, and various opinions have 
accordingly been expressed upon the subject. We learn 
from Christyn that it was an ancient custom among 
certain nations, when a noble house became extinct, to 
bury the heraldic ensigns along with the last of the 
family ; but the same writer informs us that the arms 

1 Register of Entails, vol. ix. f. 345. 


may in such a case be assumed by a stranger, with the 
consent of the Sovereign, or where a member of the 
extinct family has obtained and exercised the power of 
conceding them " by adoption, contract of marriage, 
testament, or other valid disposition." " Quamvis ficti- 
onem inducat," says Hoppingius (speaking of adoption), 
" tamen quia fictio haec legis est, et quidem accommo- 
data ad actuni favorabilem, de quo ipsa lex disponere 
posset, dicendum videtur, hoc perinde haberi, ac si vere 
et per naturam, nomen et insignia ista adoptatus ferret." 1 
" Such assumption of name and arms," in the words of 
another author, " may be regularly made by the adopted, 
when there is no heir in the family, nor any other that 
can pretend right to the name and arms : but if other- 
wise, the adopted cannot use them without the consent 
of all those in the family who have right to them." 5 
Again, according to Sir John Feme, while any man may 
give away his estate to a stranger, he cannot alienate 
his arms, the ensigns of his nobility, so long as any of 
his kindred are alive, yea, even if there be but a 
bastard remaining, capable of the King's legitimation. 3 
Other authors are of opinion that no man can alienate 
his name and arms, unless they are accompanied by 
his estate, according to the maxim, " Quod multa cum 
universitate transeunt, quse singulariter per se prohi- 

1 De Jure Insignium, par. 5. by Nisbet in the course of his obser- 

2 Chassanasus' Calalogus Gloria rations on " Arms of Adoption and 
Mundi, part 1st. Substitution." System of Heraldry, 

3 Glory of Generosltie, p. 300. vol. ii. part iii. p. 56. (See also 
These and other passages are quoted p. 343 supra.) 


The connexion between arms and broad acres is 
curiously illustrated by the alleged practice of bearing 
arms adumbrated, to which reference is made in the 
Boke of St. A Ibans. It is there stated that " certain 
nobuls and gentilmen in Englonde " bore only the out- 
line or tracing of their armorial ensigns instead of the 
charges complete, because having lost the seigniory, they 
retained only the shadow of their former property and 
importance. Dallaway, however, regards such adumbra- 
tion " rather as an imaginary distinction, than as im- 
plying that when the patrimonial estate was alienated, 
the possessor, in every instance, made at the same time 
a cession of his hereditary bearing." 1 Before the esta- 
blishment of the English College of Heralds, arms 
were, no doubt, frequently transferred, not only by 
testamentary bequest, but also by voluntary cession 
during life. 2 Edmondson remarks that " a doctrine pre- 
vailed that the rightful possessor or proprietor being 
deemed to have, as it were, an absolute freehold in his 
coat-armour, as well as in his lands, had an undoubted 
right to alienate or transfer the property and inheritance 
of both the one and the other ; and, in consequence of 
this doctrine, the proprietors of coat-armour did fre- 
quently, to the exclusion of their own heirs, by grants, 

1 Heraldic Inquiries, p. 111. Brentiugly along with the arms be- 

2 Several curious examples of these longing to the said manor sable, 
grants, during the fourteenth cen- three fleurs-de-lis argent, returned 
tury, will be found in Edmondson's into three leopards' heads gules and 
Complete Body of Heraldry, i. 156. in the same coat-armour he appeared 
About the middle of the same cen- at "the getting of Caleys." Wood- 
tury, Sir John Woodford purchased, ford Chartulary. (Gentleman 's Maga- 
from Sir John Nevil, the lands of zine, 1795, vol. Ixv. p. 184.) 


and that with a covenant of warrantry, convey, assign, 
and transfer not only such coat -armour of other 
families as happened to descend to them by right of 
inheritance as next heir, but the original and paternal 
coat -armour of their own family." 1 Again, according to 
Dallaway, " they might be assigned by a female, who 
was an heir-general, to her own husband, or to the 
husband of her daughter, who inherited her lands ;" 2 
and Camden gives us a specimen of one of these grants 
executed in the year I486. 3 Such concessions, however, 
appear to have been sometimes disputed in the court of 
the Earl Marshal, as in the case between Sir Thomas 
Cowyn and Sir John Norwich, and that between John, 
Lord Lovel, and Thomas, Lord Morley. 4 

In the present day, it would be somewhat unreasonable 
to maintain that, when a man has children of his own, 
he is fully entitled to confer his ancestral escutcheon 
upon a perfect stranger ; but, on the other hand, it 
implies a tolerably extreme opinion to adopt the views 
of Sir John Ferae, who would give the preference, not 
only to the remotest kinsman, but even to an illegiti- 
mate child. The difficulty which attends the power in 
question does not appear to be removed by the mere 
circumstance of consent on the part of " all those in the 
family who have right to the arms," as it may be very 
fairly urged that, being " marks of hereditary honour," no 
man can lawfully agree to the alienation of his paternal 

1 Complete Body of Heraldry, vol. 3 JKemaines, p. 223. 

i. p. 155. * Anstis' Register of the Garter, 

2 Heraldic Inquiries, p. 83. vol. ii. pp. 260, 370. 

2 A 


ensigns, which he inherits by right of blood ; and 
although he may despise, it does not follow that he is 
entitled to transfer them to a stranger. The Crown, 
however, still retains the power of making direct grants 
of arms (and supporters), and also of permitting persons 
to use the heraldic ensigns of other families, whose pro- 
perty they may inherit, or whose memory they may wish 
to preserve. 

As in the case of the question between the heir-male 
and the heir of line, no distinct and unqualified judg- 
ment has ever been pronounced respecting the power of 
disponing family arms to a stranger. The nearest ap- 
proach to a decision occurred in the case of Moir of Leckie, 
which occupied the attention of the Court of Session in 
the year 1794. 1 A few years previously, the laird of 
Leckie had. executed an entail of his estate, in which it 
was declared " that the heirs of tailzie foresaid, succeed- 
ing in virtue hereof, shall be bound to use the name and 
title of Moir of Leckie, and that alone, exclusive of eveiy 
other name and title ; and to carry the arms of Moir of 
Leckie, without any addition, diminution, or alteration 
of any kind." After the action came into Court, it was 
discovered that no such arms were matriculated in the 
Lyon Office, and indeed it is extremely probable that 
they only existed in the imagination of the entailer. 
The pursuer, who was the heir of entail, was the heir, 
alioqui successurus, only in one-fourth of the estate, as 
representing one of four heirs-portioners. He appears to 
have been advised that, even when there were arms in 

1 Moir v. Oraham, 5th Feb. 1794, Mor. 15537. 


a family, it was extremely doubtful whether they might 
be lawfully assigned to heirs of entail, or whether they 
necessarily descended, jure sanguinis, to the entailer's 
heir of line ; and he accordingly suggested that the con- 
dition respecting the armorial bearings " should be so 
modified by the Court as to make it consistent with the 
law of the land." On the other hand, it was contended 
by the defenders, who were the nearest substitutes in the 
deed, that it was a perfectly lawful condition in an entail 
to a stranger that he should bear the granter's arms ; and 
in support of their allegation, they pointed to the state- 
ment of Sir George Mackenzie, which we have already 
quoted. 1 The same passage was also adduced by the 
pursuer, in the course of his pleadings, and there can be 
very little doubt that the doctrine which it inculcates is 
far more favourable to his view of the case -than to that 
of the defenders. The Court " found it incumbent on 
the pursuer, and the other heirs of entail, to follow out 
the tailzier's appointment, in carrying the name and arms 
of Moir of Leckie ; and for that purpose to obtain from 
the Lyon Office arms of that description, descendible to 
the heirs of entail of Leckie.'' It is to be observed, 
however, that this case was characterized by the remark- 
able peculiarity of the entailer solemnly disponing arms 
which did not happen to exist ; and it is not very easy 
to see how any injury could thus be sustained by his 
heir of line. Moreover, the coat-armorial which was 
called into being by the authorities of the Lyon Office, 
in conformity with the judgment of the Supreme Court, 

1 Supra, p. 358. 


was specially intended for the heirs of entail, whose right 
to use the same could surely not be challenged by the 
heir of line. But it is by no means certain that the 
same decision would have been pronounced had the 
entailer regularly inherited a coat of arms from his 
ancestors, the use of which by a stranger might perhaps 
be lawfully challenged as an invasion of the hereditary 
right and privilege of the representative of the family. 

Although there appears to be no recorded armorial 
competition between an heir of line and an heir of 
entail, there can be no doubt that many instances have 
occurred where the legal heir has been passed over by an 
entail, in which the use of the relative surname and arms 
formed an essential condition in the succession to an 
estate. In all such cases, it necessarily follows that the 
identical coat of arms may be borne by two different 
families ; and we have only to turn to a very recent page 
in the Lyon Register for an instance of this " heraldic 
anomaly." In the year 1847, we find an entry relative 
to the arms of Robert Scott Wellwood (formerly Robert 
Scott Moncrieff) of Garvock, from which it appears that, 
in terms of a deed of entail, he abandoned his paternal 
surname and arms, and assumed those of Wellwood the 
bearings of Wellwood of Garvock being duly blazoned in 
the Register, viz., argent, an oak tree, accrued, growing 
out of a well in base, proper. Crest the trunk of an 
oak, sprouting out branches, with the motto, " Reviresco." 
The entry immediately following relates to Andrew 
Clarke Wellwood (formerly Andrew Clarke) of Comrie 
Castle, eldest co-heir and representative of the family of 


Garvock, who was authorized by royal license, dated 
20th May 1847, to take and thenceforth use the sur- 
name of WeUwood in addition to and after that of 
Clarke, " in order to testify his grateful regard to the 
memory of his mother's family." To him also the prin- 
cipal Garvock arms, including crest and motto, are 
" assigned , and confirmed by the Lord Lyon, the male 
issue of Robert WeUwood, his mother's paternal grand- 
father, having become extinct." 1 Here, therefore, we 
have two families bearing arms, in all respects identical ; 
the one in virtue of a deed of entail, and the other in 
the capacity of heir-general. 

When a man thinks proper to assign his armorial 
ensigns to a stranger, or a collateral relation, or even a 
younger son, and thus pass by his legal representative, 
surely the latter might with reason insist that the 
grantee could only use the arms with 'a clear and pal- 
pable mark of difference, so as to distinguish them from 
the principal bearings of the family. If it should be 
urged that such a course would not be in strict accord- 
ance with the conditions of the entail, it by no means 
follows that the heir of line would be satisfied with 
such an argument ; under which circumstances it would 
appear that the only alternative on the part of the heir 
of entail would be to obtain the sanction of the Supreme 
Court (as suggested by the pursuer in the case of Moir), 
so to modify the terms of the deed as to make it con- 
sistent with the " common law of heraldry." Let us 
remember that the object in view is to avoid the 

1 Lyon Register, iv. 102-:3. 


obvious impropriety of two different families bearing 
the same armorial ensigns. It is tolerably certain that, 
generally speaking, the heir of entail will not raise any 
objection ; and accordingly, should the lawful represen- 
tative quietly submit to the irregularity, the pure prin- 
ciples of the " noble science " will, in all probability, be 
disregarded and transgressed. And such, no doubt, has 
long been the usual practice. In most cases, it is hardly 
to be expected that the legal heir, after having been 
deprived of the substantial interests of the family, will 
make any very serious exertion to vindicate his right to 
the " barren honours " of heraldry ; but there appears to 
be no reason why the Lord Lyon should not take steps 
to prevent such irregularities by the due exercise of his 
undoubted powers. 



THE origin of Surnames, like that of Armorial Bear- 
ings, has been variously accounted for. While some 
writers consider that traces of them are to be found 
among our Saxon ancestors, their first introduction into 
this country is generally assigned to a much later period. 
According to Mr. Lower, " The practice of making the 
second name stationary, and transmitting it to descen- 
dants, came gradually into common use during the 
eleventh and three following centuries." 1 The same 
author, however, agrees with other writers in thinking 
that surnames were not established on anything like 
their present footing till the time of the Reformation ; 
and suggests that the introduction of parish registers 
may have materially contributed to their settlement. In 
some parts of the country, however, hereditary surnames 
were not in general use till a much later date ; and even 
" at the present day, they can scarcely be said to be 
adopted amongst the lower classes in the wilder districts 
of Wales." 2 

1 Essays on Enylish Surnames, i. 31. Registrar-General of England, 18.56, 

2 Sixteenth Annual Report of the p. xvii. 


The most primitive form of a second name is unques- 
tionably to be found in that numerous class of surnames 
which are derived from the Christian or fore -name of the 
father ; while many others have been adopted from per- 
sonal peculiarities, occupations and offices, locality, natu- 
ral objects, and various other circumstances. .The subject 
of family nomenclature is, in many respects, highly 
instructive. While an acquaintance with the origin of 
surnames cannot fail to throw much useful light on the 
customs and avocations of our ancestors, their local dis- 
tribution, comparative prevalence, and almost inconceiv- 
able variety, are also very interesting subjects of inquiry. 
The Report already referred to contains some curious 
statistics compiled from the general indices to the Re- 
gisters of Births, Deaths, and Marriages, illustrative of 
the probable number of surnames in England, and the 
estimated proportion of no fewer than fifty of those 
which most extensively prevail, amounting to nearly 
one-sixth of the entire population. As the result of a 
very elaborate investigation, it would appear that the 
total number of surnames in England and Wales is be- 
tween thirty-five and forty thousand. The three names 
which stand at the top of the selected list are (l) Smith, 
(2) Jones, and (3) Williams ; and taking the numbers 
as an index of the whole population, it would appear 
that, on an average, one person in every 28 would 
answer to one or other of these three surnames ! The 
ubiquitous clan of the Smiths is calculated to amount to 
upwards of a quarter of a million, being represented by 
one in every 73 persons of the entire population. 


The extraordinary number and variety of strange sur- 
names which at present abound in England, forms a 
striking contrast to their comparative rarity on this side 
of the Tweed. How some of the English surnames now 
in use could ever have been assumed, it is not very easy 
to understand ; unless, as has been conjectured, they were 
nicknames or soubriquets, which neither the first bearers 
nor their posterity were able to avoid. As examples of 
these strange patronymics of which several hundreds 
might be adduced we may mention the foil owing : 
Allbones, Baby, Churchyard, Deadman, Fudge, Gotobed, 
Littleproud, Puddle, Scamp, Slaughter, Startup, Swindler, 
Twentyman, and Wildblood ! 

Relatively to the inhabitants, the total number of sur- 
names in Scotland, estimated by the English ratio, would 
be somewhere about six thousand ; but we are strongly 
inclined to think that they are considerably under that 
figure. The most casual observer must have been struck 
with the remarkable predominance of certain names in 
particular localities, which the continued accession of 
Irish and other immigrants on the one hand, and the 
well-known wandering tendency of our own countrymen 
on the other, must, in the course of time, materially 
modify. Thus, we have Campbell, Cameron, Maclean, 
and Kennedy 1 in the west ; Macdonald, Mackenzie, Ro- 
bertson, and Stewart in the north ; Gordon, Forbes, 

1 " 'Twixt Wigtoune and the town o' Aire, 

And laigh down by the cruives of Cree ; 
You shall not get a lodging there, 
Except ye court wi' Kennedy." 



Grant, arid the east ; and Scott, Ker, Johnston, 
and Maxwell in the south. From a partial examination 
of the indices, applicable to the years 1856 and 1857, 
prepared at the Office of the Registrar-General for Scot- 
land, it would appear that the seven most prevalent sur- 
names in that country are Smith, Macdonald, Brown, 
Bobertson, Campbell, Thomson, and Stewart. In the 
case of both years, Smith, as in England, occupies the 
highest place, while the relative position of the other 
six is slightly varied. The following Table exhibits, in 
addition to other particulars, the relative strength of 
these surnames in the indices for the year 1856, which 
contain about 201,000 names, in an estimated population 
of 3,033,000 : 


Number in 
the Indices. 

Estimated Num- 
ber in the entire 





One in 69 

(incl. 29 Smyths and 2 Smythes). 




(incl. 28 Macdonnells). 




(incl. 12 Brouns and T Brownes). 




(not incl. Robinson, etc.) 





2 108 


, 95 

(incl. 135 Thompsons), 




(incl. 181 Stuarts and 3 Steuarts). 

TOTAL, . . 




Among other curious results furnished by the preced- 
ing Table, it would appear that the Smiths of Scotland 


are proportionally even more numerous than their Eng- 
lish namesakes who, as already stated, are estimated to 
constitute only one in every 73 of the entire population 
and that, on an average, one person in every 12 would 
answer to one or other of the seven specified surnames. 

The motives and causes by which persons have been 
influenced in the assumption and change of surnames are 
very numerous. During the middle ages, it was a common 
practice for younger sons, instead of retaining their 
patronymic, to adopt the names of their estates or places 
of residence. Thus, a member of the English family of 
Botteville, from whom the Marquis of Bath is descended, 
adopted the name of John of the Inne, or Thynne, from 
the circumstance of his having resided at one of the Inns 
of Court. Camden, in his Remaines, illustrates the 
extent of this custom by an instance of a Cheshire family, 
in which no fewer than nine changes of surname took 
place in only three generations of male descendants, soon 
after the Conquest. The practice in question, as well as 
the adoption of new arms, is severely criticised in the 
following passage from the Kawlinson MSS., in the Bod- 
leian Library, Oxford : " This book is collected and 
made onlye to showe the alteracion and differences of 
armes in former tyme borne and used of the nobilitie of 
this realme : for proofe it was usuall that if a Baron or 
Peare of this realme had maryed with an enheretrix of a 
greater house than his owne, he or his sonne would leave 
their owne armes, and beare their wyfe or mother's as his 
cheefe coate ; likewise a younger brother, havyng maryed 
with an enheretrix by whom he was advanced to greater 


dignytie than his elder brother, dyd use his wyfe's coate 
armour rather than to beare his owne, with a difference ; 
by which examples it is manyfeste that the erroure of 
these bearings of signes did not growe of ignorance of the 
officers of armes, by whom it was to be reformed, but 
oulye by choyse and selfewill of the nobyllitie themselfes, 
in pleasing their fantasies and obscuring the true signe 
of their progenitours ; this abuse and ignorance being 
joyned with another as common and as ill as the former, 
which was, if a man had three sonns, the one dwelling 
at the town's end, the other at the woode, and the thyrde 
at the park, they all tooke theyr surnames of their dwell- 
inge, and left their aunciente surnames ; which errour 
hath overthrowen and brought into oblivion many aun- 
cient houses in this realme of England, that are neither 
knowen by their name or armes." 3 

It has sometimes happened that a great matrimonial 
alliance did not necessarily imply the change of both 
name and arms on the part of the husband. Thus, the 
heiress of the Percys, in the reign of Henry n. (1154-89), 
married Josceline de Louvaine, a son of the reigning 
monarch of Brabant, on condition of his changing either 
his name or arms. Eelinquishing his surname, he re- 
tained his paternal ensigns, which have ever since been 
carried by the noble House of Percy. An early Scottish 
instance of a provision relative to the change of both 
name and arms occurs in the indenture, dated 1388, 
between Sir James of Douglas, Lord of Dalketh, and 
Sir John of Hamyltoune, Lord of Cadyow, relative to 

1 Quoted in Dallaway's Heraldic Inquiries, p. 128. 


the contemplated marriage of Sir John to Jacoba of 
Douglas, Sir James's second daughter. The deed de- 
clares, inter alia, that " if, by any unfortunate chance, it 
happen the said Jacoba, by the death of her brothers or 
otherwise, to come in future times to the inheritance 
and lordship of the said Sir James her father, which God 
forbid, both the parties foresaid will and grant that a 
son, whether elder or younger, who may survive between 
the said Sir John and the said Jacoba, procreate or to be 
procreate lawfully, shall receive and enjoy that inheri- 
tance, assuming the surname of Douglas and the arms 
which the foresaid Sir James bears of hereditary right." 1 
Two hundred years later (1584)-, we meet with a curious 
case of adoption, involving a change of surname, in a 
deed by John Charters in favour of Henry Lindsay, in 
which the former thus expresses himself : " Seeing, by 
the will of God, I have na heir of mi bodie, I adopt 
ane noble youth, Henry Lindsay, brother-german of a 
powerful lord, David Earl of Crawford, as my adopted 
heir, and he taking the name of Chartris, I have given 
him the barony of Kengnore and mansion called Chartris 
House, in the county of Stirling." 2 

Prior to the Reformation, ordination was a regular 
occasion of change of surname, it being then the fashion, 
according to Holinshed, "to take awaie the father's sur- 
name (were it never so much worshipped or ancient) 
and give the son for it the name of the towne he was 
born in." Thus, in the case of William of Wykeham 

1 In lies' Sketches of Early Scotch History, p. 554. 

2 Kilsyth Charters, quoted in Laing's Catalogue of Scottish Seals, No. 174. 


and William Waynflete, the patronymics of Longe and 
Barbour were entirely displaced by the clerical names 
under which they have always been known. 

In more modern times, a change of name was fre- 
quently resorted to for the purpose of concealment, in 
consequence of the commission of political or criminal 
offences, desertion from the army or navy, family 
estrangement, and various other circumstances. The 
practice was not unusual during the English civil wars, 
when the Blounts of Buckinghamshire assumed the sur- 
name of Croke, and the Carringtons of Warwickshire 
that of Smith. 1 In like manner, during the contentions 
of the Houses of York and Lancaster, different branches 
of the same family were frequently attached to opposite 
parties, and were sometimes induced to adopt new arms, 
and occasionally new surnames, in lieu of their paternal 
ensigns and relative patronymics. 2 The ancestor of the 
Fraser-Tytlers of Belnain is said to have been a cadet of 
the family of Seton, who, having slain a gentleman of 
the name of Gray, in a quarrel at a hunting-match 
during the reign of James iv., fled to France and 
assumed the surname of Tytler, which his posterity 
retained. The armorial bearings of the family are con- 
sidered to bear reference to these circumstances the 
first and fourth quarters of the escutcheon being gules, 
between three crescents, or (the ensigns of the Setons), 
a lion's head, erased, argent, within a bordure of the 
second. Crest the rays of the sun issuing from behind 

1 Fuller's Worthies, p. 51. 

2 See Dallaway's Heraldic fiH/niries, \>. 127. 



a cloud, with the motto, " Occultus noil extinctus." T 
Again, according to Nisbet, " they of the surname of 
Dickson, as descended of one Kichard Keith, said to 

be a son of the family of Keith Marischal, took their 
name from Richard (called in the south country Dick), 

1 Burke's Landed Gentry, p. 1451. 

In his review of Burgon's Me- 
moir of Patrick Fraser Tytler, Mr. 
Hannay questions the origin of the 
historian's family as stated in the 
text. The biographer, he says, " as- 
sumes the truth of the tradition, that 
the Tytlers descend from a brother of 
the George, third Lord Setou, who fell 
at Flodden. But it happens that we 
have particular information about the 
Setons of that period in the quaint 
old book, The History of the Houxe of 
Seytoun, by Sir Richard Maitland of 
Lethington, whose mother was one 
of the family, and who wrote in the 
sixteenth century. He is very par- 
ticular in telling whatever is curious 
about the House . . . and must 
have known so singular a circum- 
stance as the one recorded by way 

of accounting for the change of name 
from Seton to Tytler, and if he had 
known it would have stated it, 
which he nowhere does. We feel 
sure, therefore, that, whatever was 
the origin of the tradition in ques- 
tion, it is not true in the form in 
which the Tytlers accept it." Essays 
from the Quarterly, p. 369. 

The author is informed by his 
friend, the present representative of 
the family of Woodhouselee, that it 
appears, from a very distinct and 
circumstantial memorandum, dated 
1738, in the handwriting of his 
great - great - grandfather (Alexander 
Tytler), that his family claim de- 
scent, not from " George, third Lord 
Seton," as inferred by Mr. Hannay, 
but from his chaplain, who was a 
paternal relative. It further appears, 


and to show themselves to be descended of Keith Earl 
Marischal, they carry the chief of Keith/' 1 A more 
recent, as well as a more extended instance of a change 
of surname occurred the year after the fierce engagement 
between the Colquhouns and the Macgregors in Glen- 
fruin, or the vale of Lamentation, in the neighbourhood 
of Lochlomond. In consequence of the cruelties alleged 
to have been committed by the clan Alpine on that 
occasion, the name of Macgregor was abolished by an Act 
of Privy Council, in 1604, under which all who bore the 
name were commanded, on pain of death, to adopt other 
surnames. Along with several subsequent injunctions 
of a similar character, the prescriptive Act was eventu- 
ally repealed by the British Parliament, and the sur- 
names of Campbell, Drummond, Graham, and Stewart, 
which had been assumed by compulsion, were gradually 
supplanted by the patronymic of the clan. 

We have several instances on record of new names 
being assumed to commemorate remarkable exploits. 
The first of the surname of Turnbull is said to have 
been a powerful man named Ruel, or Rule, who turned 
a wild bull by the head when running violently against 
King Robert Bruce in Stirling Park, for which loyal 
service he obtained from that monarch the lands of 
Bedrule in Roxburghshire, along with the surname of 

that the chaplain was the person settled in the neighbourhood of Kin- 
referred to in the text who slew cardine O'Neil) the family of Wood- 
Gray in the hunting-match, and fled houselee are lineally descended, 
to France, whence two of his sons 1 System of Heraldry, i. 74. See 
came to Scotland with Queen Mary also Mackenzie's Science of Heralilry, 
in 1561, from one of whom (who chap. x. 


Turnbull. In further commemoration of the event, the 
family of that name have ever since carried one or more 
bulls' heads in their armorial shield. 1 The surname of 
Stark is derived from a similar achievement performed 
at a later period of Scottish history. It appears that a 
member of the family of Muirhead was the means of 
saving King James iv. from an attack by a bull in the 
forest of Cumbernauld, when, on account of his strength 
and prowess, he received the surname of Stark (i.e., 
potent). In order to indicate their descent from the 
Muirheads, his posterity bear, as arms, a chevron be- 
tween three acorns in chief, for Muirhead, and a bull's 
head, erased, in base. 2 

We have already referred to the occasional assumption 
of arms in consequence of feudal service, 3 such bearings 
being usually termed " Arms of Patronage." " Arms of 
Assumption," however, properly so called, were ensigns 
adopted in commemoration of victory on the field of battle 
or in the lists. Thus if a man (whether a gentleman of 
coat-armour or not) take prisoner, in war, any nobleman 
or prince, he may lawfully assume his armorial bearings, 
either adding them to his own (if he have any), or using 
them alone ; and such bearings will lawfully descend to 
his posterity. Accordingly, Sir Clement Clerke, Baronet, 
in the year 1661, bore argent, on a bend gules, between 
three pellets, as many swans proper ; with the addition 
of a sinister canton azure, charged with a demi-ram, 
mounting, argent, armed or, between two fleurs-de-lis, in 
chief, of the last, and debruised with a dexter baton 

1 Seep. 101, supra. 2 Nisbet's Heraldry, i. 332-3. 3 Supra, p. 114. 

2 B 


silver ; which were the arms of Louis d'Orleaiis, Duke 
of Longueville, whom Sir John Clerke took prisoner at 
the battle of Bonny (or the Spurs), in the year 1513. 1 

Not unfrequently, mere caprice and sometimes vanity 
are the motives which lead to a change of surname. A 
miserable notion of supposed gentility has induced many 
persons to exchange the names with which they came 
into the world for others of a more aristocratic reputa- 
tion ; and a still more common, and certainly less deli- 
berate, practice has prevailed of endeavouring (in the 
language of Miss Mitford) " to turn the vulgar to the 
genteel by the change of a letter." 2 Examples of the 
former proceeding may be given in the substitution of 
Belcombe, Cuthbert, De Winton, and M'Alpine, for Bul- 
lock, Cuddy, Wilkins, and Halfpenny; while the names 
of Smythe, Tayleure, Broun, Fysshe, and a host of others, 
will at once suggest themselves, as instances of varied 
orthography. In strange contrast to these instances of 
pitiable finery are some of the curious transmutations 
which appear to be the result of intentional or accidental 
corruption. Thus, Veitch and Weir are the modern 
forms of the grand old Norman names De Vesci and 
De Vere. De Montealto and De Montefixo ultimately 
became Mowat and Muschet ; while De Vaux (or De 
Vaus) and De Belassize degenerated into Vans and 

1 Oxford Glossary of Heraldry, nom de quelque particule lorsqu'ils 
p. 14. deviennent riches, a 1'example du 

2 Camden ascribes the motive of pauvre Simon dont parle Lucian, qui 
such changes of surname to a desire "to 6tant devemi riche, voulut qu'on le 
mollify them ridiculously, lest their nommast Simonides pour amplifier 
bearers should seem villified by them." son nom." Trait& de I'Origine ties 

" D'autres anoblissent leur sur- Noms, par De la Roque, p. 87. 


Belshes. As a general rule, however, an elongation of 
the original surname is the result of the alteration, but 
it sometimes happens that individuals of a more practical 
turn of mind resort to the opposite process of amputa- 
tion. Accordingly it appears that the great Napoleon 
not only cut off the letter e, as a useless termination, 
from his Christian name, but also dropped a u from his 
surname, substituting Napoleon Bonaparte for Napoleone 
Bwonaparte, thus depriving himself of two vowels as well 
as two syllables ! In like manner, the real founder of 
the family of Peel (or Peele), the honest calico-printer of 
Blackburn, and grandfather of the eminent statesman, 
dropped the final e from his surname, " because it added 
nothing to the sound." A somewhat similar course was 
followed by the father of the present Chancellor of the 
Exchequer, whose surname was originally Gladstones, 
from which he dropped the final s, by royal license, in 
the year 1835. Aristotle mentions the mispronouncing 
of a man's name as one of the most disagreeable insults, 
and nobody is very fond of having his name mis-spelt. 
John Home, the poet, was peculiarly sensitive on this 
point. In Scotland, the surname is uniformly pro- 
nounced Hume, but the principal branch of the family 
has long used the orthography of Home. To that form 
.the poet rigidly adhered, to the great entertainment of 
David, the historian, whose branch of the family (Nine- 
wells) had for some or for no reason preferred the 
orthography of Hume. On one occasion, the philosopher 
proposed to settle the question by casting dice to ascer- 
tain which should adopt the other's mode of spelling. 


"Nay," says John," this is a most extraordinary proposal 
indeed, Mr. Philosopher, for, if you lose, you take your 
own name, and if I lose, I take another man's name." 1 
Mr. Hubback mentions several examples of the partial 
variation of names in consequence of unsettled ortho- 
graphy ; 2 but probably the most remarkable instances of 
such a practice are the various spellings of the surnames 
of Lindsay, Stirling, and Montgomerie, which appear to 
have respectively presented themselves in no fewer than 
88, 64, and 44 different forms. 3 Even at the present 
day, the same person has occasionally been known, from 
time to time, to alter the spelling of his name, through 
ignorance, indifference, or caprice ; a practice, we need 
scarcely add, which is not only very silly and unmean- 
ing, but one which, at some future period, may perhaps 
involve his descendants in considerable difficulty with 
regard to the proof of identity in cases of disputed suc- 
cession. In the case of the Berkeley Peerage, it appeared 
that the Countess of Berkeley and her brother had 
adopted the name of Tudor in lieu of Cole, and the date 
of this change constituted a very important question in 
the proceedings before the House of Lords. 4 ' 

As might naturally have been expected in a quarter 
unenviably distinguished for instability and want of sen- 
timent, the changing of surnames is of very frequent 

1 Mackenzie's Life and Works of 2 Evidence of Succession, p. 458. 

John Home, i. 164. 3 See Lives of the Lindsays, i. 413; 

See also a codicil to David Hume's The Stirling.? of Keir and their family 

will, in an article on " Wills and papers, p. 548 ; and Memorials of 

Will-making " in a recent volume of the Monty omeries, Earls of Eglinton, 

the Quarterly Review, in which refer- ii. 366. 

ence is made to the same subject. 4 See Mbnitr* of Evidence, 181 1. 


occurrence in the American States, where the custom of 
altering Christian names which in the mother- country- 
are regarded as immutable 1 -also largely prevails. In 
both cases the change is purely voluntary, and is effected 
by the payment of a small fee an authenticated list of 
the metamorphoses being annually published by the local 
legislature. Many of the changes are simply ridiculous ; 
but " the forwardness with which the commonest persons 
thrust themselves (by implication) into known and well- 
considered families, and endeavour to identify themselves 
with eminent individuals, is equally remarkable." 5 Thus, 
Allan Smith becomes Allan Izzard ; Timothy Leary, 
Theodore Lyman ; Sarah Eobbins, Adelaide Austin ; and 
Nancy Tarbox, Almeda Taber. Again, James Colbert is 
transformed into Colbert Mortimer ; Curtis Squires into 
Pomeroy Montague ; and Clara Frinck into Clarissa 
Wilson while Horace Fish and his beloved partner 
Rhuhemah adopt the more euphonious name of Tremont. 
Hogg is converted into Howard ; Death into Dickenson ; 
Grunsel into Crowinshields ; and Tinker into Bucking- 
ham ! Mr. Wormwood asks permission to change his 
name for something more agreeable ; " certain," as he 
quaintly says, " that no member of taste will oppose his 
request." Alexander Hamilton petitions for leave to 
change on the double ground of the inconvenient lenoth 

<~> O Q 

of seven syllables, and of his inability " to support the 
dignity of a name so famous in history" ! In this case, 
however, it appears that the applicant neither referred to 

1 See Hubback's Evidence of Succession, p. 450. 

2 Household Words, xiv. 433. 


the conqueror of Darius nor to the historical association 
of his patronymic, but to a certain Secretary of the 
"Treasury to Washington, whose fame is not very gener- 
ally known on this side of the Atlantic. 

Probably the most frequent occasion of change of name 
in modern times, is in connexion with testamentary in- 

* */ 

junctions and deeds of entail, to which we have already 
referred. With the view of perpetuating his name and 
family, the maker of an entail very frequently provides 
that the several persons called to the succession, includ- 
ing the husbands of heirs-female, shall be bound to 
assume his surname and the relative armorial ensigns. 
In some cases, as previously stated, the terms of the con- 
dition are such that the surname of the eutailer must be 
borne to the exclusion of every other, while in others, it 
merely requires to be assumed, the heir having the option 
of either adding or prefixing it to his own name, unless 
the precise position is expressly provided for. 

In the substitution or addition of surnames, parti- 
cularly under the provisions of an entail, it frequently 
happens that only the heir assumes the new name, and 
in the case of a married heir-female, her husband also, 
who thus becomes, in the words of Sir George Mac- 
kenzie, " a child of the family ;" while the children 
excepting, perhaps, the heir-apparent retain their patro- 
nymic without any alteration. The same author, how- 
ever, remarks, that " though it be ordinary to make the 
eldest son only to bear the name, yet it seems very 
reasonable that even all the younger children should 
bear the name, if they get any patrimony out of the 


family, unless they can prove they were provided ali- 
unde" l It is certainly somewhat anomalous to find two 
different surnames in the same family, and in some cases 
the arrangement must be attended with certain practical 
inconveniences. But, on the other hand, as the change 
is not compulsory, there does not appear to be sufficient 
reason for its being made ; and thus the obscuration of 
pedigree is entirely avoided, while, at the same time, the 
fame of an ancient house may be rescued from oblivion. 
This is particularly the case where the patronymic is 
entirely abandoned ; but, of course, where it is retained 
along with the new surname, the objection is materially 
modified. Independently of the provisions in entails 
and other settlements, surnames are frequently assumed 
by persons succeeding to property, in compliance with 
the known wishes of the former possessor, or out of 
respect or regard to a relative or benefactor ; and in the 
case of a marriage, the husband sometimes voluntarily 
assumes his wife's surname and arms, especially when the 
latter happens to be an heiress and the former a cadet. 
Instances sometimes occur w T hich illustrate a combination 
of reverential and matrimonial motives. Thus, a certain 
landed gentleman in South Wales, the " only son of the 
late Rev. David Harries," assumed his maternal name 
(Davys) on his succession in 1832 ; and, fifteen years 
later, he made another change by the addition of his 
wife's, viz., Campbell the assumption having been, ap- 
parently, quite voluntary on both occasions. Accord- 
ingly, by means of two separate processes, Mr. William 

1 Miscellaneous Works, ii. 490. 


Harries was transformed into Mr. William Campbell- 
Davys. 1 We have another example of the adoption of the 
maternal surname one of the two just mentioned in the 
case of the gallant Lord Clyde, better known as Sir Colin 
Campbell. At the time of his installation in the House 
of Lords, public attention was called to the remarkable 
coincidence of so many distinguished individuals con- 
cerned in the ceremony bearing the name of Campbell, 
viz., the hero himself, the Bishop of Bangor, who read 
prayers, the Lord Chancellor, and the Duke of Argyll, 
by whom Lord Clyde was introduced. No doubt, in his 
original commission, which was procured for him by his 
maternal uncle, Major Campbell, he was described as 
" Colin Campbell," which surname he is said to have 
adopted with the consent of both of his parents ; but in 
point of fact, as the Birth Register of Glasgow clearly 
proves, he was the " lawful son" of John M' Liver and 
Agnes Campbell. Whether such a purely voluntary prac- 
tice can be justified is, of course, somewhat open to ques- 
tion, even in the case of those bridegrooms who rejoice in 
some of the world-wide appellations to which we have 
already referred. 

In England, as well as in France and other contin- 
ental nations, down to the seventeenth century, married 
women and widows not unfrequently retained their 
maiden names, generally, however, with an alias ; and 
in certain parts of both Scotland and Wales, such persons 
still sign by their maiden names in legal documents, even 
although described in them by the surnames of their 

1 See Walford's County Families, p. 102. 


lords. In Scottish deeds, they are almost always de- 
scribed by both the maiden and the marital surname ; a 
course which ought invariably to be followed, as sug- 
gested by Mr. Hubback, where they do not conform to 
the practice adopted in England, of signing by the hus- 
band's name. 1 The style of the present Countess of 
Home is somewhat peculiar. In a recent instrument of 
disentail, she is described as " The Right Honourable 
Lucy Elizabeth Douglas of Douglas, Countess of Home," 
being the eldest daughter of the last Lord Montagu by 
the eldest daughter of Archibald, first Lord Douglas, and 
heir -general of the House of Douglas, in consequence of 
the decease, without issue, of all her maternal uncles. 2 
It does not appear, however, that there is any obligation 
on the part of her husband, the Earl of Home, to abandon 
his paternal name and arms, as in the somewhat singular 
case of Guthrie of Mount, mentioned in the preceding- 
chapter. In that instance, as already stated, in conse- 
quence of a special provision in a Scottish deed of entail, 
an Irish nobleman (Lord Oranmore) was obliged, on 
marrying the daughter of a commoner, to lay aside his 
patronymic and relative ensigns thus finding himself 
in the anomalous position of bearing a title divorced 
from its proper surname. 

According to Mr. Lower, the wife does not change her 

1 Evidence of Succession, p. 455. which, according to Boswell, "shook 

2 The first Lord Douglas the sur- the sacred security of birthright in 
viving twin son of Sir John Stewart Scotland to its foundation." The 
of Grandtully by Lady Jane Douglas, peerage was successively held by his 
only daughter of James, second Mar- three sons, and became extinct on 
quis of Douglas was the successful the death of the fourth Baron in 
litigant in the great " Douglas cause," 1857. 


name at marriage in Spain. The son uses the paternal 
or maternal surname, as he thinks proper ; the choice 
generally falling upon that of the best family, in accord- 
ance with the proverb : 

" El hijo de ruyn Padre 
Toma el appelido de la Madre." 1 

Spanish heralds are said to have adopted a threefold 
classification of blood, as we do in the case of ribbons 
and admirals. " Blood, simple blood, according to their 
views, is the muddy puddle which paints the vulgar 
cheek of the base-born plebeian. Eed blood is the gener- 
ous fluid which glows in the veins of the hidalgo ; while 
blood, par excellence, blue blood, the ' sangre azul/ 
' sangre su/ like the white blood of the green-tea nobility 
of China, is that aristocratic ichor which lurks beneath 

the pallid countenance of a quadrupled grandee 

The thin fluid is never enriched with the calipash of the 
alderman, nor the decayed genealogical stock renewed 
by a golden graft from banker or loan-contractor." 5 
Acting upon an opposite and more wholesome principle, 
a humorous Scottish peer, towards the end of last cen- 
tury, remarked, with reference to the intended marriage 
of one of his daughters to a " man of the people," who 
had been highly prosperous in trade, that " bluid and 
suet mak the best puddin'." We have somewhere read 
of the overturn of the carriage of a Russian nobleman in 
the streets of St. Petersburg, when both he and his 
coachman happened to bleed pretty profusely. Being 

1 Essays on English Surnames, ii. 56, note. 

2 Quarterly Review, Ixii. 111. 


determined to test the truth of the Spanish theory, the 
aristocrat was induced to transmit a sample of each 
liquid to an eminent chemist for comparative analysis ; 
and, much to the disappointment and annoyance of the 
heralds, the result of the investigation was the establish- 
ment of the greatly superior quality of the coachman's 
vital fluid ! 

As already indicated, three different modes may be 
followed in the assumption of surnames, viz. : 

1. By the substitution of the new for the old name. 

2. By prefixing \ 

and > the new name to the old. 

3. By adding ) 

Of fifty-seven Scottish Peers and Baronets whose fami- 
lies have either changed their patronymic or assumed 
additional surnames, twenty-four affix and twenty-three 
prefix the assumed name ; while in the case of the re- 
maining ten, the paternal surname is exchanged for 
another. Among our untitled aristocracy, the almost 
invariable practice is to affix the assumed name, exam- 
ples of the entire change, or even of the prefix, being 
comparatively rare. 

As in the position of the assumed surname, consider- 
able variety exists in the mode of marshalling the 
relative arms. The most frequent practice appears to 
be to place the new surname last, and the new arms in 
the first and fourth quarters of the shield. By this 
means, the more important position is assigned to both 
the arms and the surname the first and fourth quarters 
of the escutcheon taking heraldic precedence of the 


second and third ; while, somewhat paradoxically, the 
last in order of the surnames is always regarded as the 
principal, being that by which the bearer is generally 
best known and most frequently described. Thus, the 
Earl of Seafield affixes the surname of Ogilvie to his 
patronymic Grant, placing the arms of Ogilvie in the 
first and fourth, and those of Grant in the second and 
third quarters. The same course is followed by the 
Gibson- Craigs of Kiccarton, Baronets, and the Maxtone- 
Grahams of Cultoquhey and Redgorton. Sometimes, 
however, when the last or principal place is assigned to 
the new surname, the new arms are disposed in the 
second and third quarters of the shield, thus following 
the order of the relative surname ; as in the case of the 
H&y-Drummonds, Earls of Kinnoull, in whose escutcheon 
the paternal arms of Hay occupy the first and fourth, 
and those of Drummond the second and third quarters. 
The converse of this practice is very rarely to be met 
with, to wit, the new surname first, and the new arms in 
the first and fourth quarters ; but it not unfrequently 
happens that while the new surname is placed first, the 
relative arms are marshalled in the second and third 
quarters. A very near approach to the former of these 
two courses is adopted by the .Z/esfo'e-Melvilles, Earls of 
Leven and Melville, who prefix the assumed surname, 
and dispose the relative bearings in the first and second 
quarters of the shield, those of the patronymic being 
assigned to the third and fourth quarters. Of the latter 
course, we have examples in the case of the Crichton- 
Stuarts, Marquises of Bute, the M urray Threiplands of 


Fingask, Baronets, and the Gampbell-Swuitous of Kim 
merghame, who all prefix the assumed surname, while 
they place the relative arms in the second and third, and 
their paternal bearings in the first and fourth quarters of 
the escutcheon. A few instances occur where the arms per- 
taining to the assumed surname do not find a place in the 
family escutcheon ; in which, however, on the other hand, 
the patronymic, although retained, is occasionally not re- 
presented. Thus, while Sir Graham GVaAcwi-Montgomery 
of Stanhope, Baronet, prefixes his maternal surname to 
his patronymic, only the ensigns of Montgomery appear 
in his shield of arms ; and, on the other hand, in that of 
Sir Henry Ferguson-Dcme, only the bearings of Davie, 
the assumed surname, are to be found. It ought to be 
borne in mind, moreover, that in addition to the arms 
pertaining to the surname or surnames of the bearer, the 
family shield in many instances, exhibits other ensigns 
carried in commemoration of alliances and other events, 
which did not necessitate the assumption of an addi- 
tional surname. As examples, we may mention the 
escutcheon of the Bethunes (paternally Lindsays) of 
Kilconquhar, Baronets, which embraces the arms of Bal- 
four as well as of Bethune, while those of Lindsay do 
not appear ; and also the armorial coats of the Callanders 
of Craigforth and the Binning-Homes of Argaty, in the 
former of which we find the bearings of Campbell in 
addition to those of Callander, while in the latter the 
ensigns of Monro, Inglis, and other surnames are placed 
side by side with those of Binning and Home. 

During the past year, public attention has been 


called to the practice of changing surnames, which now 
threatens to become objectionably prevalent. In the 
month of June 1862, Mr. Roebuck brought the subject 
before the House of Commons, in connexion with the 
case of Mr. Jones of Clytha, who had assumed the sur- 
name of Herbert without royal license, and was therefore 
ignored under his new appellation by the Lord Lieutenant 
of Monmouthshire, the Lord Chamberlain, the Horse 
Guards, and other public functionaries. Mr. Roebuck laid 
it down as a rule of law, that every man in this country is 
entitled, ex proprio motu, to take what name he pleases ; 
and in support of his statement, he cited various authori- 
ties, to most of which we shall afterwards refer. The 
Home Secretary (Sir George Grey) admitted, in reply, that 
a bond fide change of name, intended to be permanent, 
announced by public notice, and sanctioned by usage 
and lapse of time, is as valid as a change made under the 
authority of a license from the Crown. The following 
advertisement appeared in the Times of 21st February 
1862, with reference to the case in question : 

"CLYTHA HOUSE, Usk, Monmouthshire. Notice. 
I, the undersigned William Herbert, lately called William 
Jones, of Clytha House, in the county of Monmouth, Esq., 
and my wife and children, have, on and from this day, 
taken and adopted my ancient family surname of HER- 
BERT, in lieu of the said surname of Jones ; and we shall 
at all times hereafter, in all deeds and writings, and in 
all dealings and transactions, and on ah 1 occasions what- 
soever, use such surname of Herbert as our only sur- 
name ; and I have declared our intention to assume, 


take, and adopt such surname by deed, which is enrolled, 
or forthwith will be enrolled, in the Court of Chancery. 

Dated this 18th day of February 1862. 


It appears that the system of Chancery enrolment was 
first introduced about the year 1851, and since that date 
several such cases have occurred, in at least one of which 
the relative declaration embraced the voluntary assump- 
tion of new arms as well as a new surname. 1 

In some of the most recent announcements, the change 
extends to the Christian name, which, in England at 
least, as already stated, has hitherto been deemed im- 
mutable. Thus, Joshua Bug, " landlord of the Swan 
tavern," and Abraham Salaman, " gentleman," have 
transformed themselves, by advertisement, into Norfolk 
Howard and Alfred Phillips ; and it would be superfluous 
to specify the periodical which recorded the former of 
these metamorphoses in the following humorous lines : 

" Tis over ! On Chancery's rolls set at last, 
Is that awful deed-poll signed and sealed, tight and fast, 
That wipes the foul BUG from my sign-board and head, 
And plants there the proud NORFOLK HOWARD instead ! 
All the blood of the HOWARDS may chafe as it will, 
At a BUG'S bold intrusion Pure ichor be still ! 
The law it allows me to do what I 've done ; 
If a BUG was my father, a HOWARD 's my sou : 
You may boil, you may bluster, nay, burst every vein, 
But BUG 's NORFOLK HOWARD, and such he '11 remain, 
Unless it should please him, rank's pride to rebuke, 
To rise into SEYMOUR, and bully the Duke. 

1 See Herald and Genealogist, i. 17, ft seq. 


" At distinction of blood, though my shoulders I shrug, 
Who knows what may flow in the veins of a BUG ? 
The HOWARDS we sucked ere they 'd breeches to wear, 
And SEYMOURS, while still in their woad, blue and bare, 
More deep than your sires' lies our family stem ; 
They were glad to catch us, and we fed upon them ! 
Tis, perhaps, sense of justice that makes me thus fain 
To restore to your order the blood mine has ta'en. 
So open your arms gules and azure and or, 
And find 'mong your quarterings room for one more ; 
For henceforth on the coat of the HOWARDS must be, 
' On a chief, a BUG rampant, langued proper,' for me, 
Or a BUG crawling up an old family tree !" 

As already indicated, it appears to be the established 
law of both England and Scotland that surnames may 
be assumed or changed at pleasure, independently of any 
royal, parliamentary, or judicial authority. In the case 
of Barlow v. Bateman, in 1*730, the Master of the Kolls 
observed : " I am satisfied the usage of passing Acts of 
Parliament for the taking upon one a surname is but 
modern ; and that any one may take upon him what 
surname, and as many surnames, as he pleases, without 
an Act of Parliament." 1 Again, according to Lord 
Chancellor Eldon, " an Act of Parliament giving a new 
name, does not take away the former one. ... In most 
Acts of Parliament for this purpose, there is a special 
proviso to prevent the loss of the former name. The 
King's license is nothing more than permission to take 
the name, and does not give it. A name, therefore, 
taken in that way, is a voluntary assumption." ' In like 

1 Williams' Reports, iii. 64. 

2 Leigh r. Leigh, 1808 ; Vesey's Report*, xv. 92. 


manner, in delivering judgment in the case of Luscombe 
v. Yates, in the year 1822, Chief-Justice Abbott observed, 
that " a name assumed by the voluntary act of a young 
'man, at his outset into life, adopted by all who know 
him, and by which he is constantly called, becomes, for 
all purposes that occur to my mind, as much and effec- 
tually his name, as if he had obtained an Act of Parlia- 
ment to confer it upon him." l In a still more recent 
case, Chief-Justice Tindal is reported to have said, that 
" there is no necessity for any application for a royal 
sign-manual to change the name. It is a mode which 
persons often have recourse to, because it gives a greater 
sanction to it, and makes it more notorious ; but a man 
may, if he pleases, and if it is not for a fraudulent pur- 
pose, take a name, and work his way in the world with 
his new name as well as he can." 2 

The same principles appear to have been adopted in 
certain recent cases on this side of the Tweed. Thus, in 
the case of Alexander Kettle, a Writer to the Signet, who, 
in the year 1835, presented a petition to the Court of 
Session for permission to assume the surname of Young, 
the Lord President (Hope) stated it as his opinion that 
" there is no need of the authority of this Court to enable 
a man in Scotland to change his name ; " and the appli- 
cation was accordingly withdrawn as unnecessary. The 
decision appears to have had no reference to the fact 
that the petitioner had previously obtained a royal 
license to change his surname, but proceeded on the 

1 Barnewall and Alderson's Report*, \. 344. 

2 Davies r. Lowndes, 1835 ; Bingham's New Cases, i. 618. 



general ground that he was entitled, ex proprio motu, to 
assume any name he chose. 1 In apparent contradiction 
to this decision, is the later case of Harry Inglis, another 
Writer to the Signet, to whom authority was granted, in 
the year 1837, to assume the additional name of Max- 
well. 2 It is not stated that the ground of sustaining the 
application was the w T ant of a royal license, which, in 
Kettle's case, was regarded as unnecessary ; and perhaps 
the prayer of the petition may have been granted without 
any reference to the earlier application. Be this as it 
may, in the still more recent case of Kinloch v. Lowrie, 3 
the principle of Kettle's case was adopted by the Lord 
Ordinary (Cowan) and acquiesced in, to the effect that " a 
person may sue under a new name assumed by himself, 
even though assumed without any royal or judicial 
authority." It appears from the judgment that the 
advocator was born in Paisley in 1810, that he was 
married there in 1832, and that while resident in that 
quarter he was known and designed by the name of 
Callaghan, Kellachan, or Killochan ; that he afterwards 
carried on business in Kilmarnock as John Kelloch or 
Killoch ; and that after the year 1842 he was generally 
known in Glasgow by the name of John Kinloch, under 
which name he obtained a license as a tavern-keeper. 
In the note to his interlocutor, the Lord Ordinary seems 
to indicate an opinion that there is comparatively little 
difference between Killochan and Killoch, 4 or indeed 

1 Session Cases, xiii. 262. 4 According to the same view, 

2 Ibid. xvi. 111. Buchanan and Buchan might be re- 

3 Dec. 13, 1853, Ibid. xvi. 197. garded as synonymous. 


between Killoch and Kinloch ; and he refers to the 
learned argument at the debate as to the difference, in 
the Gaelic language, between Kil and Kin. He also 
refers to the judgment of the Court, delivered by Baron 
Parke, in the English case of Williams v. Bryant, 1839, 1 
observing that "the practical rule solves all such niceties, 
viz., that by that name by which a party has been for 
years exclusively known to the public, and has trans- 
acted with them, he is entitled to sue, and is liable to be 
sued, in judicial proceedings ; and no inconvenience to 
third parties, or departure from legal principle, can be 
seriously alleged to attend its recognition." A similar 
view appears to have been adopted in the High Court of 
Justiciary, in the case of John Finlayson, 10th January 
1844, 2 when an objection to the citation of the panel 
under the name of Finlayson instead of Finlay was re- 
pelled, in respect that although unable to subscribe his 
name, he had passed under the former surname both at 
his judicial examination and in an application for bail, 
thus leading the authorities to believe that his real name 
was Finlayson. In support of the objection, one of the 
magistrates of Cromarty deponed that he knew Andrew 
Finlay, the father of the prisoner ; that an extract from 
the Register of Baptisms produced, relative to a person 
named John Finlay, applied, in his belief, to the prisoner; 
and that he had known him from his birth, and always 
understood his name to be Finlay. In repelling the 
objection, Lord Mackenzie remarked that " the change 
which the panel had made upon his name, by the addi- 

1 Meeson and Welsby's Reports, v. 447. 2 Broun's Jt(sticiary Reports, ii. 17- 


tion of ' son,' was not uncommon In the Highlands." The 
only early analogous Scottish case appears to have oc- 
curred in the year 1749, viz., that of Alexander Lord 
Forbes of Pitsligo, who was attainted under the name 
and designation of Alexander, Lord Pitsligo. 1 He claimed 
his estate as not forfeited, in consequence of his not 
having been described by his true name and title. His 
plea was sustained by the Court of Session, but the 
judgment was reversed by the House of Lords, as it was 
proved that he was commonly known by the designation 
of Lord Pitsligo. 

During last century, a change of surname was fre- 
quently effected by means of an Act of Parliament, but 
for some time past the more usual course has been by 
royal license. One of the most recent instances of statu- 
tory sanction that we have been able to discover is the 
Act 19 and 20 Viet. c. 5 (23d June 1856), "to authorize 
Sir Lionel Milborne Swinnerton, Baronet, and his issue, 
to assume and bear the surname of Pilkington jointly 
with the surnames of Milborne and Swinnerton, and to 
be called by the surnames of Milborne Swinnerton 
Pilkington." It appears from the preamble that a few 
months previously the said Sir Lionel, then Pilkington, 
in compliance with a proviso in a certain indenture of 
settlement, had obtained the royal license to take the 
names of Milborne and Swinnerton only, and to bear the 
relative ensigns quarterly with his family arms ; and 
further, that in terms of the said indenture, having suc- 
ceeded to a title of honour in the shape of a Baronetcy, 

1 Mor. Diet. 4155, voce Falsa Demonstratio. 


he could only resume the relative surname (Pilkington) 
with the authority of Parliament. 1 

The practice of effecting a change of surname by royal 
license appears to be of considerable antiquity, 2 and 
there can be no doubt that, failing the more formidable 
machinery of an Act of Parliament, many important 
advantages may be derived from such a course of pro- 
cedure. Thus, in the case of the Rokeby Barony, the 
record of royal licenses for the change of surnames and 
arms was produced from the Heralds' office and admitted 
in evidence, in order to account for the change of the 
claimant's name from Robinson to Montagu. 3 It is 
obvious that without some such record the difficulty of 
proving identity might be materially increased, and com- 
mon sense appears to dictate the propriety of some formal 

1 A still more recent Act was hart-Wishart, when he resumed his 
passed in 1859 (22 Viet. c. 1) "to paternal surname of Lockhart, which 
enable Charles Frederick Clifton, he had exchanged for that of Mac- 
Esquire, and the Lady Edith Maud donald, on his marriage to Elizabeth, 
(daughter of the Marquis of Hast- daughter and heiress of John Mac- 
ings) and their issue, to assume and donald of Largie, in 1762. The 
bear the surnames of 'Abney Hast- present Baronet carries the arms of 
ings ' in lieu of the surname of Lockhart in the first and fourth, and 
'Clifton,' and to bear the arms of those of Macdonald in the second 
Abney Hastings." and third quarters of his escutcheon. 

As a Scottish example of a re- In like manner, the present Earl 

sumed surname, we may mention of Haddington resumed his patro- 

the Macdonald-Lockharts of Lee and nymic of Hamilton with the relative 

Carnwath. The first Baronet of ensigns, which he now bears along 

that family was Alexander, third with the surname and arms of 

and eldest surviving son of George Baillie, these having been exclu- 

Lockhart of Carnwath, and great- sively assumed by his grandfather on 

grandson of the celebrated Lord inheriting Jerviswoode and Mellers- 

President of the Court of Session, tain, the extensive estates of his 

who succeeded to the estates of Lee maternal grandfather, 
and Carnwath, in 1802, on the death 2 See Archceologia, xviii. 110. 

of his cousin Charles, Count Lock- '' Minutes of Evidence, 1830, p. 14. 


procedure being adopted on the occasion of a change of 
surname, with the view of establishing a fact of so much 
importance. 1 The following statement relative to the 
ordinary course of procedure in connexion with a change 
of name under royal license, is from an able article on the 
subject in question, in a recently established periodical 
devoted to the interests of Heraldry and Genealogy : 2 - 
"The person desirous to make the change presents a 
petition to the Secretary of State for the Home Depart- 
ment, who refers the same for consideration to the Kings 
of Arms, as the fittest authority to examine into the truth 
of its allegations. Those officers report upon the facts 
of the case, and the matter then rests with the Secretary 
of State. If it has been found that the party is a repre- 
sentative in blood of the family whose name he wishes 
to assume, or if he has married the heiress of such family, 
or if he has been desired to take the name by the will 
of one to whose estate he has succeeded, his request is 
granted, and the royal license is issued. Its publication 
in the London Gazette is optional, but it is generally 
inserted there, in accordance with a special form. But, 
if it appear that the applicant has asserted facts which 
are incapable of proof, or has alleged no better reason for 
his desire to get rid of his paternal name than mere 
whim or fancy, the Kings of Arms then report to that 

1 The concluding clause of an Act duly authorized to print the Statutes 

of Parliament authorizing a change of the United Kingdom, and a copy 

of surname and arms is usually in thereof so printed by any of them 

the following terms : " This Act shall be admitted as evidence thereof 

shall not be a public Act, but shall by all judges, justices, and others." 
be printed by the several printers to 2 The Herald and Genealogist, 

the Queen's most excellent Majesty edited by John Gough Nichols, i. 11. 


effect, and the royal sign-manual is not permitted to be 
affixed to an act which would either sanction a false- 
hood, encourage a caprice, or cause annoyance to families 
whose historic or distinguished names might thus be- 
come the sport of all who are bold and unscrupulous 
enough to assume them." The amount of the fees pay- 
able in connexion with a change of name by royal 
license has been stated in a previous chapter. 1 Accord- 
ing to a recent writer, however, the cost is " said to vary 
from 150 to 300." 2 

The only connexion of the Lyon Office with changes 
or assumptions of surnames appears to be in those 
cases where applications are made for relative armorial 
alterations. According to Professor Lorimer, " the Lord 
Lyon will not, as is popularly believed, grant authority 
to an individual to change his name ; but, on the narra- 
tive that he has already changed it, he will grant him 
arms under his new name ; and in the patent, or, if 
desired, in an extract from the record, he will certify 
the fact of the change. 3 This certificate (he continues) 
has been recognised both by the War Office and by the 
Admiralty, as identifying the bearer of the new name 
with the bearer of the old name, which is the only object 
of the Queen's letters-patent ; and officers of the army 
and navy have been permitted to change their names on 
the lists, and to draw their pay under their new deno- 
minations." 4 

1 Supra, p. 173. Graham of Cultoquhey ami Recl- 

2 Falconer's Law of Surnames, p. 74. gorton. 

3 This course was recently fol- 4 Hand-Book of the Law of Scot- 
lowed, in the case of Mr. Maxtone- land, second Edition, p. 445. 


Mr. Riddell refers to the great laxity and abuse which 
have latterly prevailed in Scotland with respect to the 
gratuitous assumption of both dignities and surnames, 
while the former practice in such matters appears to 
have been very strict and guarded, and must necessarily 
have checked undue appropriation. " Even an express 
Act of Parliament," he says, " seems to have been incum- 
bent on a change of surname. Thus, on 10th May 1527, 
Robert Bertoun having married the heiress of Mowbray 
of Barnbougal, and it being one of the marriage articles 
that he should bear that surname, thereupon obtained a 
public enactment that he ' suld be callit Mowbray/ The 
form was solemn and precise ; for the King and Parlia- 
ment formally ' creatit and namit Robert Bertoun to be 
of the surname of Mowbrayis, etc. ; and he to be callit 
Mowbray commonly amangis all his liegis.' " * As other 
examples of statutory intervention, we may mention the 
Act 1581, c. 46, in terms of which William Maxwell, 
" apperand of Lammingtoune," assumed the surname and 
arms of Baillie, in lieu of his patronymic and relative 
ensigns, in order to fulfil certain conditions in a matri- 
monial contract ; the Act 1663, c. 26, " for changing the 
name of Souter, of late used by some of the name of 
Johnstoun ; " and the still more recent enactment in 
favour of William Pyet, his kinsmen and relatives, in the 
year 1707, authorizing them "to discharge the ignomi- 
nious nickname of Pyet (Anglice, magpie), and to assume 
and use their ancient surname of Graham, which," they 
set forth in the relative application, " they cannot do, 

1 Scottish Peerage and Consistorlal Law, i. 293. 


having trade both at home and abroad, without a pub- 
lick act." 1 

It appears from the printed Acts of Sederunt, that 
applications to the Court of Session in connexion with 
the change or assumption of surnames have been fre- 
quently made during the last hundred years. Most of 
the petitioners appear to have been Advocates, Writers 
to the Signet, or Notaries-Public, who, in consequence 
of relative provisions in entails and other deeds of settle- 
ment, were obliged either to change their names or adopt 
additional surnames ; and the main object of the appli- 
cations seems to have been to obtain the .sanction of the 
Court to make the necessary alteration in their subscrip- 
tions, in all legal and judicial proceedings. Thus, in the 
years 1757 and 1789, John Semple and William Mow, 
Writers to the Signet, are authorized to adopt Sempitt 
and Molle, as the more correct spelling of their respective 
surnames. Again, John Muir, Writer to the Signet and 
Notary-Public (1764), William Mitchell, formerly Writer 
and Notary-Public, " now holding an important office in 
the Forth and Clyde Navigation Company ",(1774), and 
David Mathie, Writer in Glasgow and Notary-Public 
(1830), are allowed to change their respective patrony- 
mics to Chalmer, Livingston, and Fogo, in consequence 
of relative conditions in the dispositions of certain lands. 
For similar reasons, William-Charles Little of Libberton, 

1 Even names of places appear to Gloume" was changed to " Camp- 
have been formerly changed in Scot- bele," and that of Lord St. John's 
land under the authority of the Legis- " house and place " altered from Hal- 
lature. Thus, by 1 489, cc. 23 and 24, kerstoun to "The Temple." See 
the name of the "castell callit the also 1606, c. 63. 


Advocate and Justice of the Peace (1793), David An- 
derson, Advocate (1814), James Gibson of Ingliston, 
Writer to the Signet (1823), and David Maitland, Ad- 
vocate (1825), obtain permission to assume the surnames 
(and arms) of Gilmour, Blair, Craig, and Mackgill re- 
spectively, in addition to their paternal names and bear- 
ings. 1 The application of William Stirling, Advocate, 
in 1823, presents the peculiarity of not being consequent 
upon any documentary condition, having been merely 
prompted by his desire to assume the name, arms, and 
designation of Graham of Duntroon, as heir-general of 
that ancient family. 

A few cases of a similar kind are reported to have 
recently occurred in the English Law Courts, the parties 
all being Attorneys (influenced by various motives), of 
which we may mention the following : William Duggett 
Ingledew, 1849 ; Thomas James Moses, 1850 ; Josiah 
Heaton Dearden, 1850 ; John Matthews Chamberlain, 
1852 ; and Edward Bryan Jones, 1853. 2 In the first 
two cases, the paternal names of Ingledew and Moses 
were dropped by the applicants ; while in the other three 
cases, Heaton, Chamberlain, and Bryan were respectively 
assumed, the first two being the maternal surnames of 
the parties. In the case of Moses, Mr. Justice Coleridge 
said that, in future applications of the same nature, the 

1 See also the cases of Small- situation. Practice of the Court oj 

Keir (1810), Beil-Madachlan (1813), Session, i. 44. 

Young-Themes (1823), and Scales- 2 1 Lowndes, Maxwell, and Pol- 
Cldand (1831). Mr. Shand refers to lock's Reports, 1 ; 19 Law Journal, 
four unprinted cases between 1841 Q. B., 345 ; 20 Law Journal, 80, 
and 1845, in one of which the party Exchequer; 22 Law Journal, Chan- 
did not hold any public or official eery, 22 ; 22 Law Times, 123. 


affidavits ought to state very clearly that the party is 
not apprehensive of any proceedings being instituted 
against him by the name he bears on the roll. 

Nearly two hundred years ago, the practice of chang- 
ing names appears to have been regarded as highly 
objectionable in France. " II est manifeste," says De la 
Roque, " que le changement de noms sernble eteindre 
des races avant qu'elles le soiet, et il en est arrive des 
inconveniens tres-prejudiciables." 1 During the fourteenth 
and fifteenth centuries, such changes seem to have been 
effected in that country without any form or solemnity ; 
but, owing to the consequent abuses, an ordinance was 
promulgated by King Henry IL, in the year 1555, to the 
following effect : " Que pour eviter la supposition des 
noms et des armes, d'offences sont faites a toutes per- 
sonnes de changer leurs noms et leurs armes, sans avoir 
obtenu des Lettres de dispense et permission, a peine de 
mil livres d'amande, d'estre punis comme faussaires, et 
estre exauthorisez et privez de tout degre et privilege de 
Noblesse." Camden thus refers to the same subject : 
" The inconvenience of change of names hath been dis- 
covered to be such in France, that it hath been pro- 
pounded in the parliament at Dijon, that it should not 
be permitted but in these two respects : either when one 
should be made heire to any, with any especiall words 
to assume the name of the testator ; or when any one 
should have donation surmounting a thousand crownes, 
upon the same condition." 2 Speaking of the ancient 

1 Traite de FOrigine des Noms 2 Remaines concerning Britain 

(1681), p. 98. Surnames, (1657,) p. 145. 


practice in France of changing name and arms in con- 
sequence of prescribed conditions in deeds of settlement 
and marriage-contracts, De la Roque remarks : " II faut 
neanmoins que ces changemens, quoy que legitimes, 
soient fondez en Lettres enregistrees a la Chambre des 
Comptes, et publics au Parlement pour rendre la chose 
solemnelle et publique." l 

It need scarcely be stated that the practice of chang 
ing surnames has been frequently resorted to for fraudu- 
lent purposes ; and such practice may perhaps become 
even more prevalent than heretofore, if the unwarrantable 
assumptions which are now of almost daily occurrence 
are not checked by the force of public opinion, if not by 
more summary means. Among the Eomans, a fraudu- 
lent change of name was punishable by the Lex Cornelia 
de falsis ; and in modern times, cases constantly occur 
which seem to call for the introduction of penal enact- 
ments. While it may be highly proper, in accordance 
with the principle adopted in the cases of Kinloch and 
Finlayson already referred to, to sue an impostor or 
indict a pickpocket commonly known as Richard Stanley, 
but whose real name is Richard Snooks, under the 
former of these two appellations ; it does not appear to 
follow, as some people rather rashly conclude, that no im- 
pediment ought to be tolerated that would prevent any 
" free-born Briton" from calling himself Tomkins to-day 
and Plantagenet to-morrow, without the slightest shadow 
of a reason. Still less is it desirable, in these days of 
" comfortable convicts," that a ticket-of-leave gentleman 

1 Traite, par De la Roque, p. 186. 


should be allowed, if not encouraged, to assume a new 
name, with a view to a safer return to his old courses ; 
more especially Avhen it appears, on good authority, that 
the reference of petitions for change of name, from the 
Home Secretary to the Kings-at-Arms, actually originated 
from the circumstance of those patriotic lieges who had 
" left their country for their country's good," adopting 
new names on their return from transportation, and en- 
deavouring to get them countenanced by royal license. 1 

In business transactions, the system of " sham firms" 
is unfortunately by no means rarely encountered. A 
striking illustration of this dangerous chameleon was 
exhibited about two years ago in the Small Debt Court 
of the western metropolis. A lithographic firm in Glas- 
gow sued Robert Revie, 28, Park House Lane, for goods 
supplied to him amounting to the value of three guineas. 
The defender admitted the receipt of the goods, but 
pleaded that the pursuers were bound to sue the firm of 
Milne and Reid, coachbuilders, 5V, Robertson Street, and 
that he only ordered the goods for that firm. In answer 
to this allegation, and in illustration of the nuisances 
arising from sham firms, the pursuers averred that, dur- 
ing the previous eighteen months, the defender had been 
the representative of no fewer than nine different firms 
or names, embracing, on the one hand, the names of 
Robert Revie, Revie and Co., Milne and Reid, and Tait 
and Co. ; and on the other, the trades of confectioner, 
commission agent, warehouse agent, coachbuilder, tailor, 
debt- collector, and messenger ! 

1 See Herald and Genealogist, i. 27, note. 


Perhaps some of our constitutional friends may allege 
that the " liberty of the subject " ought not to be in- 
vaded by any restrictive legislation relative to nominal 
metamorphoses. In that case, we venture to hope that 
their liberal enthusiasm may be ere long cooled down 
by a share of the practical experience of the pursuers in 
the case of Eevie. Even in the land of " liberty, frater- 
nity, and equality/' we have seen that it has been found 
necessary to place legal difficulties in the way of arbi- 
trary changes of name. So recently, indeed, as the year 
1858, a law was enacted in France against the assump- 
tion of names of addition ; and not many months ago 
the Imperial Court of Paris condemned a M. Hadot to 
a fine of 500 francs for having signed several public 
documents with his wife's name (D'Orville) added to his 
own, after being duly warned of the illegality of such 
procedure. 1 

In the words of a French writer (Salverte), "one's pro- 
per name is one's-self." The mere mention of a man's 
name immediately recalls the man himself to our re- 
membrance, and presents to the mind's eye his personal 
appearance, moral attributes, or some remarkable event 
with which he is identified ; and " this peculiar power," 
the same writer observes, "distinguishes the proper name 
from the common substantive." Goethe, in his Autobio- 
graphy, likens a man's surname to his skin, next to 
which it is probably the most characteristic thing about 
him. It is no mere cloak, as that great philosopher 
remarks, to be assumed and abandoned at pleasure, indi- 

1 See Herald and Genealogist, i. 28. 


eating, as it frequently does, his ethnology, his nationality, 
and perhaps even the county of his birth, which are all 
circumstances that, to a certain extent, determine his 
type of character and constitution. A few centuries ago, 
family nomenclature was variable and unsettled. In 
these later days, however, surnames are fixed and deter- 
mined, and, in many instances, distinguished by historical 
associations. If a man will abandon his patronymic, it 
does not follow that he is entitled to appropriate an 
illustrious surname ready-made. He may invent a new 
name for his own special use, and do what he can to 
render it distinguished. But better still unless indeed 
he has the misfortune to bear one of those unenviable 
names to which we have already referred let him en- 
noble the plebeian appellation with which he came into 
the world by the vigorous display of any of the active or 
passive virtues, and its supposed vulgarity will speedily 
cease. In the language of the Saturday Reviewer? " If 
you are yourselves illustrious, your names will be illus- 
trious after you. We suppose that before the battle of 
the Nile the name of Nelson sounded no more august 
than the name of Jackson. And let a man stick to his 
father's real name. In these days, nobody but a most 
practised herald can tell who anybody is ; so many 
people assume the name and arms of somebody else I" 

The Registrar-General of England informs us that 
" the name of John Jones is a perpetual incognito in 
Wales, and being proclaimed at the cross of a market- 
town would indicate no one in particular." 2 A most 

1 8th October 1859. 2 Sixteenth Annual Report, p. xix. 


unfortunate result, undoubtedly ; but the inconvenience 
arising from a countless host of real Joneses, Smiths, and 
Williamses, is surely a more desirable state of family 
nomenclature that what we seem to be rapidly approach- 
ing, viz., an equal host of sham Herberts, Howards, and 
Hamiltons. The Registrar-General plausibly suggests that 
" a partial remedy for this state of things would perhaps 
be found in the adoption of a more extended range of 
Christian names, if the Welsh people could be induced 
to overcome their unwillingness to depart from ancient 
customs, so far as to forego the use of the scriptural 
and other common names usually given to their children 
at baptism." ] 

A little work has recently appeared relative to the 
law of surnames, 2 which was written, as the author in- 
forms us in the preface, " with the sole object of defend- 
ing a very respected neighbour from a series of published 
attacks, of a most censurable character." Had the writer 
confined himself to a mere enunciation of what he con- 
ceives the law to be, his essay might have proved both 
interesting and instructive. Unfortunately, however, a 
somewhat confused statement of the various decisions 
that have been pronounced on the subject, is unpleas- 
antly and even offensively pervaded by a strong animus, 
not only against the supposed enemies of his " respected 
neighbour," but against the Lord Chancellor, the Home 
Secretary, and other public functionaries. The tone of 
the vindication will be gathered from the following pas- 

1 Sixteenth Annual Report, p. xix. affecting their change, by Thomas 

2 /Surnames and the rules of Law Falconer, Esq. 


sages : " It is said that when a change of name is 
made by a gentleman, it is 'a graceful deference to the 
Crown to obtain a royal license/ The Crown confers 
no surnames, and the real meaning of these words 
is, that it has pleased certain unknown officials, the 
mere parasites of the royal ante-chamber, to tax easily 
plundered esquires, and to receive from them heavy 
fees through an expensive and unnecessary process of 
obtaining the sign-manual." Again, he observes that 
" the Heralds' College pretend an interest in this ques- 
tion It is but just, however, to the keepers 

of the great Heraldic Menagerie on Bennet's Hill to 
say, that the larger scale of fees payable on a change 
of name by royal license is not devoured by red lions, 
or true blue dragons, or, in fact, received by the College 

In the second part of his essay, Mr. Falconer some- 
what prominently alludes to the armorial branch of the 
subject, in connexion with the intimation that " when 
Mr. Jones has obtained the royal license to assume and 
bear the name and arms of Herbert, the Lord Chancellor 
will direct the necessary alteration in the Commission " 
of the Peace. It would appear that Mr. Jones alleges 
that his family has always borne the Herbert arms. 
" Accidentally," according to Mr. Falconer, " the families 
of Llanarth and Clytha (at present represented by a 
nephew and uncle) do now bear the arms of a family of 
Herbert, and their right to bear them has been allowed 
by the Heralds' Office, and is entered by heraldic authority 
on the record of their pedigree in that Office." Either, 

2 D 


therefore, these Joneses are Herberts in disguise (in which 
case the resumption of their patronymic could not be 
very reasonably objected to), or they have been irregu- 
larly bearing, "for many generations, among the very 
foremost of the gentlemen of Monmouthshire," the 
armorial ensigns of another family. 

The law relative to the assumption of surnames has, 
on several occasions, been the subject of judicial con- 
sideration, in connexion with the interpretation of certain 
clauses in the English Marriage Acts, 26 Geo. n. c. 33, 
and 4 Geo. iv. c. 76. The object of the former of these 
statutes was the prevention of clandestine marriages, and 
it required that a written notice of " the true Christian 
and surnames of the parties " should be delivered to the 
minister, with a view to publication of banns. The 22d 
section of the later Act provides that, " if any person 
shall knowingly and wilfully intermarry without due 
proclamation of banns, the marriages of such persons 
shall be null and void." Some very curious cases have 
occurred under these apparently simple enactments. The 
grand result of the relative decisions appears to be that, 
where either of the married parties is ignorant of the 
misdescription in the banns, the marriage cannot be 
assailed ; in other words, that both of them must be 
cognizant of the undue publication before the marriage 
is celebrated, to render it invalid. 1 On more than one 
occasion, it appears to have been held that the true 
name is the name by which a party is known, and not 

1 See case of Bower Wood, Satur- earlier cases cited in Hubback's Em- 
day Reo'mo, 3d December 1859, ami dence of Succession, pp. 277-84. 


necessarily his original name. 1 Difficulties sometimes 
occur with reference to the determination of the true 
names of illegitimate children. Lord Stowell remarked 
that "they have no proper surname but what they 
acquire by repute, though it is a well-known practice, 
which obtains in many instances, to give them the sur- 
name of the mother, whose children they certainly are, 
whoever be their father." 2 

The hardships resulting from the judicial decisions in 
such cases as that of Wood are fortunately unknown in 
Scotland, where the law of marriage has been so sweep- 
ingly assailed. Shortly after Lord Elcho's Registration 
Act came into operation (in 1855), a case occurred in 
one of the large commercial towns of Renfrewshire 
which illustrated the superiority, in at least one respect, 
of the Scottish law of marriage. Robert Bryan and 
Bridget Toy were duly proclaimed with a view to 
matrimony. On the day of the intended ceremony, the 
fickle Bridget changed her mind, but the bridegroom 
being bent on an immediate change of state, proposed 
to Isabella Gray, who not only accepted his hand and 
heart, but agreed to personate the inconstant first- love, 
and to sign (by mark) under her name in the statutory 
marriage schedule. The ceremony was accordingly per- 
formed, and the schedule transmitted to the Registrar 
for the purpose of being recorded. Some months after- 
wards, the true facts of the case were discovered by the 

1 Rex v. Billingshurst, 1814, 3 224; and Rex v. Tibshelf, 1830, 

Maule and Selwyn's Reiwrts, 250; BarnewallandAdolphus'.ff<?p0rte, 190. 

Rex v. Burton upon-Trent, 1815, 2 See cases cited in Hubback's 

Ibid. 537 ; Cope v. Burt. 1 Phil. Eridence of Succession, p. 280, note 10. 


parties resolving to be regularly proclaimed and re- 
married under their real names. The case was, of course, 
brought under the notice of the authorities ; the parties 
were both sentenced to imprisonment ; and ultimately 
the original entry of marriage was cancelled by the 
Sheriff's authority, and the subsequent ceremony duly 
registered. In point of law, however, although not 
" regularly " married in consequence of the want of due 
proclamation, the parties became man and wife after the 
performance of fae first ceremony, in accordance with 
the maxim : Nil facit error nominis cum de corpore 
vel persond constat. 1 In England, however, there can 
be no doubt that a marriage celebrated under similar 
circumstances might have been judicially declared null 
and void. 

We are informed by the advocates of free trade in 
surnames that the only conditions that must be fulfilled 
to legalize the adoption of a new name are publicity, 
good faith, and the absence of every improper motive. 
Under these circumstances, we should like to know, 
in the event of a man with a large family of children 
assuming a surname, to which certain important educa- 
tional or other advantages are attached by the liberality 
of some " pious founder," whether he would be enabled, 
by his mere voluntary act, to secure for his children a 
share of the advantages in question, in common with 

1 A similar case occurred in Fife, Sheriff granted warrant for its correc- 

in the year 1857, on which occasion tion in terms of the Statute the rela- 

the false name was assumed by the tive insertion in the " Register of Cor- 

bridegroom. Instead of cancelling the rected Entries" embracing a distinct 

original entry in the Register, the statement of all the facts of the case. 


other children having a right to bear the same surname 
by virtue of their birth, and who might perhaps be able 
to connect themselves with the pedigree of the testator. 
We happen to know of a case in the north of Scotland, 
where it was seriously contemplated to make a change of 
surname with the avowed object of enjoying some such 
testamentary benefit ; but if it was actually carried into 
execution, it is to be hoped that the administrators of 
the bequest considered it to be their duty to ignore the 
barefaced claim. Mr. Innes mentions the case of an 
Irish gentleman of the name of Morris, living in Paris, 
who assumed the surname of De Montmorenci, and 
persuaded his relatives to follow his example ; " but the 
descendants of the premier baron Chretien called a 
council of the family, and published an Act enumerating 
all those whom they recognised as genuine, in which the 
Irish cousins were not included." 1 In the English case 
of Barlow to which we have already referred, the House 
of Lords, reversing the decision of the Master of the Rolls, 
held that a voluntary change of name from Bateman 
to Barlow on the part of the husband did not bring the 
wife within the scope of her kinsman's bequest, and 
that her marriage to such a person was not a fulfilment 
of the condition of the will. She was not required to 
marry any person connected by blood with the testator, 
and was free to choose from the world at large any 
person bearing the name of Barlow, i.e., bearing it either 
by birth, or by virtue of an Act of Parliament, by which 
it appears to be universally admitted that a name can be 

1 Scottish Surnames, p. 41. 


actually conferred. 1 Again, in the case of Leigh, to 
which we have also already referred, the assumption of 
a name by royal license, even by the first and nearest of 
kin of the devisor of a certain estate, was held to be 
insufficient to satisfy the limitation in the deed, which 
required that the heir should be a person bearing the 
family name of Leigh from his agnation to the testator. 
In all such cases, it is manifest that the intention is to 
benefit those who bear a particular name by derivation 
from their ancestors. 

Various suggestions have been made respecting the 
propriety of some change in the law with regard to the 
use of surnames. Some writers have recommended the 
enactment of greater restrictions than at present appear 
to exist, with the view of checking the increasing mania 
of assuming new names. Even if duly fortified by fines 
and penalties, it is to be feared that any such legislative 
interference, while perhaps needlessly creating a new 
class of offences, would prove practically inoperative. 
Others, again, are of opinion that greater facilities should 
be afforded, and propose the establishment of a special 
register, upon easier terms than at present, either at the 
College of Arms, 2 or at the Office of the Registrar- 
G-eneral. Extending the suggestion embraced in the 
latter alternative, Mr. Falconer considers that " it should 
be enough to register the change in any office for the 
registration of births, deaths, and marriages, and a small 
fee only should be payable. There should be no com 1 

1 4 Brown, Par. Cases, 194. existing practice of the Lyon Office 

2 We have already mentioned the with reference to changes of name. 


pulsion to make this registration. Whatever name may 
suggest a sentiment of pleasure or happiness, or which 
may promote the interest of any person, he should remain 
as free to adopt as the law at all times has left open to 
him." 1 Of course, the chief objection to the system of 
royal licenses is their expense, which we are told forms 
an insuperable barrier in the case of every poor man who 
is ashamed of his father's name ; 2 but it may be gravely 
doubted whether this is a sufficient argument to encour- 
age the modern propensity to arbitrary changes of sur- 
name. In addition to advertisement in the public prints, 
Mr. Thomas Wetherell suggests a " Declaration and Deed 
Poll/' somewhat similar to that adopted by Mr. Jones of 
C'lytha, to be executed, stamped, and enrolled in Chan- 
cery, of which the total cost would not exceed 2, 16s. 3 
Such enrolment is, of course, nothing more than a per- 
sonal declaration, and the document is merely recorded 
" for safe keeping." What effect may follow such pro- 
cedure, will necessarily depend not, of course, on the 
enrolment, but on the amount of success which the party 
meets with, in his attempts, by advertisement or other- 
wise, to persuade the public to acknowledge him under 
his new name. It is alleged that, even under the free 
trade system, there are sufficient obstacles of a personal 
kind to check the tendency in question ; such as force of 

1 Law of Surnames, p. 46. " What's in 'a name? That which we call a 


2 Such persons appear entirely to B >' "* other name would srae " M sweet 
ignore the well-known conclusion of 3 See Law Times, 7th June 1862, 
Shakspeare's Juliet in her address to and Falconer's Law of Surname*, pp. 
her lover : 41-43. 


habit, fear of ridicule, and, even- in the case of the bearers 
of the most offensive patronymics, a certain degree of 
family pride, which becomes a positive virtue when con- 
trasted with the mauvaise honte to which we have 
referred. The advocates of voluntary assumption trium- 
phantly point to the statement of Lord Chief-Justice 
Coke, that " a man cannot have two names of baptism 
(i.e., a name assumed in addition to his original bap- 
tismal name), as he may have divers surnames ;" l but 
the assertion that a man may have divers surnames does 
not necessarily imply that the great English jurist went 
the length of holding that the voluntary and capricious 
assumption of surnames is absolute and unlimited. The 
anonymous writer whom we have already quoted comes 
to the conclusion that no useful change of the law can at 
present be made. " We are of opinion," he observes, 
" that it would be unwise to extend further encourage- 
ment to such changes ; as it might tend to supply un- 
scrupulous men with readier means of defrauding others, 
and afford to silly men greater opportunities for sowing 
the seeds of future confusion and inconvenience to them- 
selves and their posterity." 2 

1 1 Institute, p. 3. nonnced by the Hon. Judge Daly, in 

2 Herald and Genealogist, i. 27. the Court of Common Pleas at New 
[A judgment on the law of proper York, which will appear in a future 

names has been very recently pro- page of the Herald and Genealogist.] 



EVEN those matter-of-fact individuals who profess to 
look upon the " noble science " as an unintelligible rem- 
nant of mediseval barbarism, must be tolerably familiar 
with the constituent portions of the heraldic insignia of 
the United Kingdom the three golden lions (or leopards) 
of England, " passant gardant in pale," carried since the 
reign of Henry n. ; the red rampant lion of Scotland, 
within the double tressure flory counterflory, of which 
the origin is veiled by the mists of antiquity ; * and the 

1 In common with earlier writers, 
Nisbet adopts the tradition which 
assigns the assumption of the ram- 
pant lion to Fergus i., who is alleged 
to have flourished, as King of Scot- 
land, about 330 years before Christ. 
He also refers to the celebrated league 
which Charlemagne is said to have 
entered into, in the beginning of the 
ninth century, with Achaius, King 
of Scotland, on account of his as- 
sistance in war ; " for which special 
service performed by the Scots, the 
French King encompassed the Scots 
lion, which was famous all over 
Europe, with a double tressure 
flowered and counterflowered with 
flower-de-luces (the armorial figures 
of France) of the colour of the lion, 
to show that it had formerly de- 

fended the French lilies, and that 
these thereafter shall continue a de- 
fence for the Scots lion, and as a 
badge of friendship." (System of Her- 
aldry, vol. ii. part iii. p. 98.) On the 
other hand, Chalmers observes that 
these two monarchs were probably 
not even aware of each other's ex- 
istence, and suggests that the lion 
(which, as we have seen, first appears 
on the seal of Alexander n.) may 
have been derived from the arms of 
the old Earls of Northumberland and 
Huntingdon, from whom some of 
the Scottish Kings were descended. 
He adds, however, that the lion was 
the cognizance of Galloway, and 
perhaps of all the Celtic nations. 
Chalmers also mentions an " ould 
roll of armes," preserved by Leland, 


golden harp of the Emerald Isle, which has long taken 
the place of the three crowns formerly borne as the arms 
of Ireland. The fleurs-de-lis of France, originally as- 
sumed by Edward m. in the year 1340, and borne semee 
over the field till the beginning of the fifteenth cen- 
tury, were removed from the national escutcheon at the 
time of the Union with Ireland in 1801; and after the 
death of William iv,, the arms of Hanover (carried by 
the first two Georges in the fourth quarter of the royal 
shield, and by the three succeeding monarchs on an 
escutcheon surtout) ceased to occupy their accustomed 
place, upon the Sovereignty of that Kingdom being 
severed from the British Crown. 

The first important alteration in the mode of marshal- 
ling the royal arms took place in 1603, at the Union of 
the crowns of England and Scotland in the person of 
James I. and VL, who appears to have adopted the fol- 
lowing arrangement : Quarterly, I. and IV. counterquar- 
tered, 1 and 4 France, 2 and 3 England ; l II. Scotland ; 

said to be of the age of Henry ill. thelyoun without onymar." If this 

(1216), and which the context evinces alteration of the blazon was ever 

to be as old as the reign of Edward I. actually made, it did not long coii- 

(1272), in which the arms of Scot- tinue. 

land are thus described : " Le roy 1 According to some writers, Ed- 

de Scosce dor a un lion de goules a ward in. at first placed the arms of 

un bordure dor flurette de (joules." England before those of France, but 

He somewhat unaccountably rein arks soon afterwards reversed the order, 

that " in this description, we see probably because France was the 

nothing of the double tressure." more ancient monarchy. 
Caledonia, i. 762, note (i). In 1471, King James was not the first 

the Parliament of James in. " or- Scottish monarch who displayed the 

danit that in tyme to cum thar suld arms of England in his escutcheon, 

be na double tresor about his armys, "Every one will recollect," says Mr. 

hot that he suld ber hale armys of Hallam, " that Mary Stuart's reten- 


III. Ireland. The supporters assumed by King James, and 
continued by all his successors, were a lion and a unicorn. 
The former had been carried, as one of their supporters, 
by several of his predecessors on the English throne, 
while two of the latter had supported the royal shield 
of Scotland from the reign of his great-grandfather, 
James iv. 1 According to Nisbet, however, " upon his 
accession to the throne of England, there were several 
considerations and consultations taken by his Majesty 
and Privy-Council of England, about the honours and 
precedency of his kingdoms of Scotland and England, 
and especially in marshalling their armorial ensigns ; the 
difficulty arising from the armorial figures of England, 
being originally those of the dukedoms of Normandy and 
Aquitaine, being three leopards, which, as such, gave 
place to the flower-de-luces of France, as belonging to a 
kingdom. Upon the same reasons, the Scots claimed 
also precedency for their royal armorial figure, the lion 
rampant within a double tressure, the paternal arms of 
the king and his progenitors, used by them before the 

tion of the arms and style of England England quarterly, the former being 

gave the first, and, as it proved, in- placed first ; and over all a half scut- 

expiable provocation to Elizabeth. It cheon of pretence charged with the 

is indeed tme, that she was Queen arms of England, the sinister half 

Consort of France, a State lately at being partially obscured, in order to 

war with England, and that if the intimate that she was kept out of 

sovereigns of the latter country, even her right. See Strype's Annals, vol. 

in peace, would persist in claiming i. p. 8. 

the French throne, they could hardly ' Nisbet refers to the unicorn as a 
complain of this retaliation." (Con- suitable badge of Scotland's indepen- 
tititiitioHal History of England, 4th dency, quoting some of the well- 
edit., i. 127.) There was, however, known verses in the 39th chapter of 
something peculiar in Mary's mode the Book of Job. System of Her- 
of blazoning. She bore Scotland and f'/'/'V/, vol. ii. part iv. p. 35. 


English used the leopards, and that the paternal ought 
to precede the maternal ones, as I mentioned before the 
King of Castile's arms were preferred to those of Leon, 
the wife's arms." 1 In referring to this " outbreak of 
touchiness on heraldic matters," Mr. Chambers remarks, 
that " wherever two nations are associated under one 
monarchy, the smaller usually manifests no small amount 
of jealousy regarding its national flag, and every other 
thing which marks its distinction, and which may have 
been associated with the national history. The govern- 
ment of Sweden is at this day under constant anxiety 
regarding the rampant lion and battle-axe of the Nor- 
wegian flag, lest on any occasion due honour should not 
be paid to it, and feelings of international hostility be 
thereby engendered." 5 In consequence of certain differ- 
ences between his subjects of North and South Britain 
" anent the bearing of their flags," King James appears 
to have issued a proclamation, on the 12th of April 1606, 
ordaining the ships of both nations to carry, on their 
maintops, the crosses of St. Andrew and St. George 
interlaced ; Scottish vessels being, at the same time, 
authorized to display the flag of St. Andrew, and English 
vessels the flag of St. George, in their sterns. 3 " After 
the union of the crowns," says Nisbet, " the Scots arms 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part France and Spain, on account of the 
iii. p. 99. Sir George Mackenzie greater antiquity of our royal race. 
claims precedency of the Kings of Treatise on Precedency, chap. ii. 

France and Spain for the King of 

, . . . . * Domestic Annals of Scotland, i. 

Great Britain, on the ground of his 

being King of Scotland, which king- 
dom he considers ought to be pre- 3 Sir James Balfour's Historical 
ferred to England, as well as to Works, ii. 13. 


were preferred to the English, as in all his Majesty's seals, 
ensigns, and coins ; though the English preferred Eng- 
land to Scotland, yet their seals, ensigns, and coins bear 
no authority further than the dominion of England ; and 
though the legend round both seals was Rex Magnce 
Britannice, Francics, et Hibernice" 1 He then blazons 
the achievements of his Majesty, as King of Scotland 
and England respectively, and informs us that the latter 
mode of marshalling "had no authority in Scotland;" 
and that " no coins were current there but those that had 
the arms of Scotland placed in the first quarter before 
those of France, England, and Ireland, and ensigned with 
the imperial crown of Scotland." 5 Such precedence is 
given to the arms of Scotland (which are also repeated in 
the fourth quarter), in the achievement of Charles II., 
engraved in Sir George Mackenzie's Science of Heraldry, 
where the unicorn, as dexter supporter, is crowned with 
an imperial, as well as gorged with an open crown. The 
same arrangement occurs on the Great Seals of James VI., 
Charles I., Charles n., James vn., William and Mary, 
and Anne, in Anderson's Diplomata Scotice. 3 Nisbet 
further remarks, however, that " since the incorporate 
union betwixt England and Scotland in the reign of 
Queen Anne, the arms of the two nations have been 
otherwise marshalled together, where the lion of Scotland 
has lost his precedency" 4 the blazon being, first and 
fourth, England and Scotland impaled ; second, France ; 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 3 Plates xciv.-xcix. 

iii. p. 100. 4 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 

2 Ibid. p. 101. iii. p. 101. 


third, Ireland ; with a lion as the dexter, and a unicorn 
as the sinister supporter. 

Towards the beginning of the year 181*7, an alleged 
alteration in the mode of marshalling the royal arms in 
Scotland appears to have been brought under the notice 
of the Home Secretary, the Lord Advocate, and other 
public functionaries, by Mr. Home, who then held the 
office of Lyon-Depute. In consequence of George in. 
having assumed the title of King of Hanover, a royal 
crown was substituted for the electoral bonnet over the 
arms of Hanover in the national escutcheon, in terms of 
an Order in Council, dated 8th June 1816. This altera- 
tion was directed to be made in the Great Seal of the 
United Kingdom, and in all the seals of office, stamps, 
coins, etc., where the royal arms were used. By some 
accidental or wilful neglect, the said Order was not com- 
municated to the Lord Lyon, King-of-Arms for Scotland ; 
and it was only after a new seal had been sent from 
London for the use of the Court of Justiciary in Scot- 
land, that the matter came to the knowledge of the Lord 
Lyon's Depute. Although the Order in Council made no 
other alteration in the royal arms than the substitution 
of the Hanoverian crown for the electoral bonnet, on the 
new Justiciary seal the first and fourth quarters of the 
shield were exclusively appropriated to the arms of Eng- 
land, while those of Scotland were placed in the second 
quarter. Mr. Home asserted that, " agreeably to her- 
aldic principle and uniform previous custom," the arms 
of Scotland ought to occupy the first and fourth quarters 
of the escutcheon upon public places in Scotland, and 

IN THE YEAR 1817. 431 

also on seals used in that portion of the kingdom. 
He founded his plea partly on the greater antiquity 
of the Scottish monarchy, and partly on the fact of 
the union of the two kingdoms, in the year 1707, 
not having been the result of victory on one side, 
but of an amicable agreement on both sides ; and in 
support of his position, he referred to the first two of 
the passages in Nisbet, which we have already quoted. 
He then alluded to the 24th article of the Act of Union 
(16th January 1707), and the relative Order in Council 
three months afterwards, in terms of which the arms of 
England and Scotland were impaled in the first and 
fourth quarters of the royal escutcheon, and certain par- 
ticulars settled respecting the Great Seal, Council Seal, 
flags, badges, etc., which, however, according to JVlr. 
Home, were not intended to apply to Scotland. The 
Order makes no mention of the Scottish seals which are 
specially referred to in the Union Act, and, accordingly, 
Mr. Home concluded that Queen Anne thought proper 
to make no alteration on the seals used in Scotland, 
which were therefore allowed to be continued as for- 
merly. At the accession of the House of Hanover, in 
1714, an alteration was made in the arms of Great 
Britain, whereby the impaled ensigns of England and 
Scotland were withdrawn from the fourth quarter of the 
escutcheon to make way for those of Brunswick, Eng- 
land and Scotland being confined to the first quarter, 
and the second and third quarters assigned to France 
and Ireland as before. Such mode of marshalling was 
adopted in England, and on the coinage, etc. pertaining 


to the United Kingdom, but on the seals, etc. peculiar 
to Scotland, according to Mr. Home, the arms of Scot- 
land occupied the dexter, and those of England the 
sinister side of the first quarter, during the reigns of the 
first three Georges. At the union with Ireland in 1801, 
the arms of France, as already stated, were removed 
from the national escutcheon, while the first and fourth 
quarters were assigned to England, the second to Scot- 
land, and the third to Ireland the ensigns of Hanover 
being placed on a shield surtout. No intimation of this 
important change appears to have been made to the 
Lord Lyon, and consequently no new seals were struck 
for Scotland, where the old ones continued to be used ; 
and the transmission of the new Justiciary seal, in the 
year 1816, suggested the remonstrance of the Lyon 
Depute in the beginning of the following year. We 
have been unable to learn the result of that remon- 
strance, of which it appears that no record has been 
preserved in the office of the Lord Lyon ; and no less 
than six-and-thirty years passed away before another 
armorial agitation disturbed the peacefully-united sister 

In the month of January 1853, a respectful petition 
was presented to the Lord Lyon by five citizens of the 
Scottish metropolis, in which various armorial grievances 
were set forth, while his heraldic majesty was requested 
to adopt certain somewhat summary measures, in virtue 
of the powers conferred upon him by the Acts of 1592 
and 1672, and to take various other steps, with the 
view of promoting the objects of the petitioners. The 


grievances in question may be briefly stated under the 
four following heads : 

1. The placing of the arms in Scotland in the second 
quarter, instead of the first and fourth quarters of the 
national escutcheon, on flags and standards displayed at 
the Castle of Edinburgh, and other foils and garrisons 
in North Britain such arrangement not being in accor- 
dance with the mode of marshalling adopted on the 
Great Seal of Scotland down to the union of the King- 
doms in the reign of Queen Anne, and in all succeeding 
reigns ; on the Privy Seal of Scotland, and other official 
seals and documents in that portion of the empire ; 
and also on the exterior of government offices in the 
Scottish metropolis. 

2. The placing of the cross of St. Andrew behind the 
cross of St. George, instead of in front thereof, on the 
Union standard displayed in the same situations. 

3. The placing of the arms of Scotland in the third or 
sinister, instead of in the second or dexter shield, on the 
Two-shilling piece or Florin a preference being given 
to the arms of Ireland. 1 

4. The removal of the imperial crown from the head 

1 There cau be no doubt that the from the left (speaking heraldically), 

petitioners were right in the matter in which ease the dexter shield, 

of the florin, the top of the " reverse '' bearing the arms of Ireland, would 

of which is clearly indicated by the be the fourth, Scotland the second, 

marginal legend setting forth the and England the first and third, 

name and value of the coin. Possibly, Such a mode of computation., how- 

however, the arrangement adopted ever, contradicts the quarterly ar- 

may have been an unintentional rangement of the arms in the national 

mistake on the part of the engraver, escutcheon, in which England oc- 

who perhaps regarded the four escut- cupies the first and fourth places. 

cheons as marshalled in circular order See Note* a lift Queries, ix. 59. 

'2 E 


of the unicorn, the supporter of Scotland in the national 
achievement, on the Great Seal of Great Britain, and 
other official seals used in England. 

The answer shortly afterwards returned to the petition 
was to the effect, that the Lord Lyon had no jurisdiction 
in a matter which was vested in the Sovereign by an 
express provision of the Treaty of Union ; and about 
three months later (13th April 1853), a new peti- 
tion, addressed to the Queen by the Magistrates and 
Town-Council of Brechin, was deposited at the Home 
Office by Mr. Joseph Hume. This petition embraced 
the principal heads of the Edinburgh memorial, and 
prayed for an inquiry into the facts set forth. It was 
forthwith referred by Lord Palmerston to the officers of 
the English College of Arms, and during the following 
month of May a report on the subject by Sir Charles 
George Young, Garter King-of-Arms, was received at 
the Home Office, and transmitted to the office of the Lord 
Lyon, from which it was returned to Lord Palmerston 
early in June, along with the observations of the Lyon 
Depute, Mr. Tytler of Woodhouselee. The Garter King 
refers, in his report, to the representation made to Lord 
Sidmouth, by Mr. Home, in 1817, "the complaint in 
fact being nearly the same as now urged ;" but states 
that no intimation was ever given to the Earl Marshal 
as to the nature of the answer returned by the Home 
Office to the Lyon Depute. He points to the Order in 
Council, at the time of the Irish Union in 1801, as 
determining the position of the arms of Scotland in the 
national escutcheon (viz., the second quarter), and states 


that when Tabards were prepared for the officers of 
arms in Scotland by the Earl Marshal, in the year 1820, 
that arrangement was followed. He alludes to the mode 
of marshalling adopted on the Great Seal used by King 
James in England from 1603 (to which we have already 
referred), where the arms of Scotland occupied the 
second quarter, while the unicorn, as sinister supporter, 
was not royally crowned, its neck being gorged with a 
coronet, " as it has continued to this day." He acknow- 
ledges, however, that on the Great Seal of Scotland, the 
arms of that kingdom had precedence of France and 
England, and that the head of the unicorn, as dexter 
supporter, was royally crowned ; adding that such mode 
of marshalling became incongruous and inconvenient, 
when the independence of Scotland ceased, by the two 
kingdoms becoming one. The Garter King then refers 
to the 1st and 24th articles of the Treaty of Union, and 
the relative Order in Council of 17th April 1707. The 
former of these two articles declares that " the ensigns- 
armorial of the said United Kingdom be such as her 
Majesty shall appoint, and the crosses of St. George and 
St. Andrew 1 be conjoined in such manner as her Majesty 

1 In the Scottish version of the hundred years later. At the union 

"Act ratifying and approving the with Ireland, in 1801, the banner of 

Treaty of Union," the order of the St. Patrick was combined with those 

crosses is reversed, St. Andrew being of St. George and St. Andrew ; and 

somewhat significantly mentioned since that date, the three crosses have 

before St. George. constituted the second "Union Jack," 

Sir N. H. Nicolas is of opinion in accordance with the following 

that the flag arranged by the heralds blazon : Azure, the crosses saltire of 

on the occasion of the royal procla- St. Andrew and St. Patrick quarterly 

mation in 1606 was the same as that per saltire, counterchanged argent 

adopted, as the national banner, a and gules ; the latter fimbriated (or 


shall think fit, and used in all flags, banners, standards, 
and ensigns, both at sea and land." The 24th article 
provides that " the quartering of the arms, and the rank 
and precedency of the Lyon King of Arms of the Kingdom 
of Scotland, as may best suit the Union, be left to her 
Majesty ; and that, in the meantime, the Great Seal of 
England be used as the Great Seal of the United King- 
dom, and that the Great Seal of the United Kingdom be 
used for sealing writs to elect and summon the Parlia- 
ment of Great Britain, and for sealing all treaties with 
foreign princes and states, and all public acts, instru- 
ments, and orders of State which concern the whole 
United Kingdom, and in all other matters relating to 
England, as the Great Seal of England is now used ; 
and that a seal in Scotland, after the Union, be always 
kept and made use of in all things relating to private 
rights or grants which have usually passed the Great 
Seal of Scotland, and which only concern offices, grants, 
commissions, and private rights within that kingdom ; 
and that until such seal shall be appointed by her 
Majesty, the present Great Seal of Scotland shall be 
used for such purposes ; and that the privy-seal, signet, 
casset, signet of the Justiciary Court, quarter-seal, and 

rather edged) of the second ; sur- been made during the reign of 

mounted by the cross of St. George of James vi. See Glossary of Heraldry, 

the third, fimbriated as the saltire. p. 315. 

The tenn Jack is most probably The Duke of Wellington bears the 
derived from the surcoat or jacque second union jack over his paternal 
(whence the word jacket) anciently arms in an inescutcheon placed on 
worn by the English soldiery, and the honour point of the shield 
not, as has sometimes been alleged, which was appropriately granted to 
from Jacques, in consequence of the the hero of Waterloo as an " honour- 
first alteration in the banner having able augmentation." 


seals of courts now used in Scotland be continued ; but 
that the said seals be altered and adapted to the state of 
the Union, as her Majesty shall think fit." 1 The Order 
in Council directs "that the draft marked A be made 
use of for the manner of bearing armes for the said 
United Kingdome, that Her Majesty's motto, Semper 
eadem, be continued, and that the same quartering of 
armes be used in Ireland and other Her Majesty's do- 
minions ; . . . that the union flagg continue as at 
present ; that the standard be the armes of the United 
Kingdome, etc., without the orders, legends or sup- 
porters ; that the flaggs be according to the draft marked 
C, wherein the crosses of St. George and St. Andrew are 
conjoyned ; that the Badges for her Majesty's state in 
Parliament and elsewhere be according to the severall 
drafts marked D ; that where such ornaments are neces- 
sarily to be used, they may be properly intermixed, so 
as the English have the preference of the Scots, but 
where the rose and thistle are to be used alone, then to be 
represented as the thistle inoculated upon the stalke of 
the rose/' It so happens that none of the drafts men- 
tioned in the Order appear in the Council Register, but 
there can be no doubt that in the marshalling in ques- 
tion, the first and fourth quarters of the escutcheon were 
occupied by the arms of England and Scotland impaled, 

1 Iu his " observation " on the re- was a thing of no great consequence, 
lative minute of the Scottish Parlia- nor could it be referred to anybody 
meut, De Foe remarks that "the better than Her Majesty ; and there- 
debate of the rank and precedency fore the dispute of this was not 
of the heralds, and of the quartering long." History of the Union between 
of arms, the standards and colours, England and Scotland, p. 475. 


the second quarter by the arms of France, and the third 
by the arms of Ireland ; that the dexter supporter was 
the lion royally crowned, and the sinister, the unicorn 
gorged with a crown ornamented with crosses patee 
and fleurs-de-lis alternately ; and that the cross of St. 
George surmounted the cross of St. Andrew. Her Ma- 
jesty's principal Secretaries of State were directed to 
signify the royal decree " within the United Kingdome 
of Great Britain, Ireland, Her Majesty's plantations in 
America, the islands of Jersey and Guernsey, and other 
Her Majesty's dominions." The Garter King remarks that 
no exception was made in favour of Scotland, and that 
the order applied to the whole of the United Kingdom. 
He refers to the passage in Nisbet, which we have 
already quoted, with reference to the Scottish lion's loss 
of precedency " since the incorporate union," and ob- 
serves that if the Great Seal of Scotland was other- 
wise cut, in contravention of the Order in Council, 
he " cannot tell upon what authority it has been 

In alluding to the alleged removal of the imperial 
crown from the head of the Scottish supporter, the 
Brechin petitioners remark that the unicorn is thus re- 
duced to the rank of a " private or provincial supporter, 
instead of representing the ancient kingdom of Scotland." 
The Garter King, on the other hand, asserts that the 
head of the unicorn has never been crowned in the royal 
achievement of Great Britain, and that, while the absence 
of the crown does not convert it into a " private" sup- 
porter, the supporters of a subject are not unfrequently 


crowned. 1 Again, the Lyon-Depute (Mr. Tytler) remarks, 
that even in Scotland the crowned unicorn is of compa- 
ratively recent occurrence, dating only from the accession 
of James vi. to the English throne. In Sir David Lind- 
say's blazon of the royal arms of Scotland, no crowns 
appear on the heads of the unicorns, and the same 
arrangement occurs on Queen Mary's Great Seal, in 
which, however, the cross of St. Andrew is surmounted 
by an open crown, on at least one of the banners passing 
behind the escutcheon. 2 With reference to the Orders 
in Council of Queen Anne and George IIL, the Lyon- 
Depute is satisfied that they were both " intended to 
apply to Scotland, to the extent of prescribing the manner 
in which the armorial bearings of the United Kingdom 
were to be there carried ;" thus formally confirming the 
opinion of the English Garter King, that one uniform 
mode of marshalling was enjoined for the whole British 

The subject in question has caused a good deal of agi- 

1 As furnishing examples of ducatty 2 See Plate xm. fig. 4. 

crowned supporters, we may mention There seems to be no good evidence 

the achievements of the Duke of of the lion having been crowned in 

Northumberland, the Earl of King- the royal achievement of England 

ston, Lord Carbery, and Sir Edward before the sixteenth century. On 

Meredyth, Bart. Animate crests as the Great Seal of Henry vin., the 

well as charges are also frequently supporters were a dragon and a grey- 

crowned, as in the escutcheon of a hound, but he afterwards assumed a 

well-known Scottish ironmaster on lion (in some instances crowned) for 

one of the windows in Glasgow Ca- his dexter supporter, and placed the 

thedral, in which three rampant lions dragon on the sinister side. Nisbet, 

are adorned with crowns, being the however, appears to consider that 

arms of an ancient Derbyshire family Edward vi. was the first English 

of the same surname, with which, monarch who crowned the head of 

however, we presume the ironmaster the lion. See System of Heraldry, 

has not the slightest connexion. vol. ii. part iv. p. 36. 


tation, at least on this side of the Tweed ; and the tone 
of criticism adopted by certain journals has not been 
altogether satisfactory. Possibly some persons may have 
attached too much importance to the subject, but surely 
a respectful representation relative to a somewhat doubt- 
ful point is entitled to a fair and patient consideration. 
One honourable exception among the wholesale abusers 
of the public press was found in the venerable "Sylvanus 
Urban," who thus refers to the " ill-natured and ignorant 
shout of ridicule" which was raised against the Edin- 
burgh petitioners : " The argument maintained by the 
Times, in opposition to the remonstrance, is this : that 
heraldic symbols being utterly worthless, and of no more 
importance than a ' particular checked pattern for a pair 
of trowsers/ they may be assumed or changed at plea- 
sure ; that it is perfectly indifferent whether they are 
correctly or incorrectly displayed ; and that the heraldry 
of a stage melodrame or of the London cabs is just as 
good as that of the College of Arms. We have always 
maintained that there are two respects in which heraldry 
is valuable the one as a means of historical evidence, 
the other as a branch of the arts of design. . . . And 
shall we be told that true taste, correct marshalling, and 
accurate delineation, are unimportant even on the na- 
tional standard or on the coins of the realm ? Is anything 
like art to be disregarded in our current money, 'so 
that enough of the commodity can be procured, and that 
it will pass for the value it professes to represent V These 
are sentiments which do not become a civilized country 
or a civilized age. . . . Though the wishes of the Scot- 


tish petitioners may be overborne by an assertion of the 
superiority of the imperial to the merely provincial mar- 
shalment of the national insignia, they by no means 
deserve, as gentlemen and as scholars, to be held up to 
ridicule for representations in which they are technically 
correct, and in the assertion of which they have been 
actuated by those feelings of ancient patriotism which 
have, from generation to generation, preserved a fine 
spirit of honourable nationality among our northern 
countrymen." 1 

The general practice in Scotland, in the matter in 
question, has most assuredly been more in accordance 
with the notions of the complainers than with the views 
adopted by the Garter King-of-Arms. Of late years, 
perhaps, the tendency may have been rather in the other 
direction ; but for nearly 150 years after Queen Anne's 
Union, there can be no doubt that, whether rightly or 
wrongly, the precedence was usually given to the arms 
of Scotland on official seals and government buildings 
on this side of the Tweed. In the year 1729, a royal 
warrant was issued authorizing payment of the sum of 
501), 8s. 9d. to John Hollo, " chief engraver of our 
seals," for the making and engraving of several seals and 
signets including the Great Seal, Privy Seal, Justiciary 
Seal, etc. for " that part of our United Kingdom called 
Scotland ;" and thirty-seven years later (2d May 1766), 
the sum of 532, 15s. id. was paid to Christopher Seaton, 
then " chief engraver," under a similar warrant, in ac- 
cordance with the particulars expressed in a bill annexed 

1 Gentleman's Magazine, vol. xxxix. (new series), p. '282. 


to the warrant, of which the following is an excerpt : 
" The Great Seal of North Britain engraven on one side 
with his Majesty's whole atchievement, being, within an 
escutcheon, his Majesty's royal coat-of-arms surrounded 
with the two Orders of St. Andrew and St. George, . . . 
supported on the right side by a unicorn with an im- 
perial crown over the head, holding a banner, with the 
union crosses of St. Andrew and St. George, gorged about 
the neck with an ancient crown with a chain fixed to it, 
the left supporter, a lyon guardant, crowned with an im- 
perial crown, holding also a banner with the union crosses 
of St. George and St. Andrew ; ... on the other side, 
his Majesty's effigies on horseback, with a sword drawn 
in his hand, and, for a distinction from the Great Seal of 
Great Britain, a thistle and rose joined together for the 
Union, and in a prospect the City of Edinburgh," etc. 
Here, it will be observed that the precedency is given to 
Scotland, so far at least as the exterior ornaments are 
concerned ; and although the marshalling of the escut- 
cheon is not specified, there can be no doubt that similar 
precedency was there ceded to the Scottish lion. The 
same precedency is distinctly referred to by several Eng- 
lish writers on Heraldry. Thus, in noticing the removal 
of the arms of France from the national escutcheon 
in the year 1801, a recent author remarks that "the 
English shield became I. and IV. England, II. Scotland, 
III. Ireland ; it being, at the same time, agreed (?) that 
Scotland's lion should in Scotland be allowed to take 
precedence of our English leopards." 1 Again, the writer 

1 Millington's Heraldry in History, Poetry, and Romance, p. 330. 


of an able article on Heraldry in the last edition of the 
Encyclopaedia Britannica? observes that " in Scotland 
the preference has been given to the royal arms of that 
kingdom, by placing them in the principal place on many 
of the official seals in use for that part of the United 
Kingdom/' Such arrangement is adopted on the seals 
or cameos at present used by the Lord Advocate of Scot- 
land, and by the General Prison Board; but on those of 
most of the Government departments including the Post 
Office, Lunacy Board, Justiciary Office, Board of Super- 
vision, Inland Kevenue Office, 2 etc. the arms of England 
occupy the principal place. In a few instances, as on 
the seal of the Board of Manufactures, only the arms of 
Scotland, with two unicorns as supporters, appear Eng- 
land and Ireland being altogether ignored. Considerable 
variety prevails in the marshalling displayed on public 
buildings, and over the shops of her Majesty's tradesmen 
in the Scottish metropolis. Thus, at the Exchequer, the 
lion rampant occupies the first and fourth quarters of the 
escutcheon, of which the dexter side is supported by the 
unicorn. The same arrangement occurs at the National 
Security Savings Bank, and at the establishments of 
her Majesty's postmaster, optician, upholsterer, etc., the 
head of the unicorn being sometimes crowned and some 
times uncrowned. At the Eegister House, on the other 

1 Thomas W. King, York Herald. velope bearing a royal shield, in which 

Scotland occupies the first, England 

2 Towards the end of the year the second and third, and Ireland the 
1856, a correspondent of the Edin- fourth quarter ; " by which means 
burgh Courant called public attention (the writer observes) England is still 
to the circumstance of the Inland made to hold two quarters, and Scot- 
Revenue Office having issued an en- land only one." 


hand, the first quarter of the shield is occupied by Eng- 
land and Scotland impaled, the former being placed first, 
and the- unicorn acting as the sinister supporter. The 
same disposal of the escutcheon is exhibited on the pedi- 
ment of the Royal Bank, where, however, the unicorn is 
placed on the dexter side of the shield. A somewhat 
similar compromise appears on one of the ceilings at 
Holyrood, and also on the cameo of the Roxburghshire 
Constabulary, where England occupies the first and 
fourth quarters of the shield, while, in the case of the 
supporters, the unicorn has the more honourable position. 
The royal achievement, as displayed on the Edinburgh 
Gazette, and also on the title-pages of most of the Bibles 
printed in Scotland, must fully satisfy the desires of the 
most patriotic Scotchman, viz., Scotland, first and fourth 
in the escutcheon ; one of the Scottish mottos (In De- 
fence) issuing from behind the imperial crown ; the uni- 
corn as dexter supporter, with a crown on his head as 
well as round his neck ; and, in the case of the Gazette, 
the cross of St. Andrew surmounting the cross of St. 
George, on the dexter banner. 

We have endeavoured to state all the facts of the 
case, as urged by the rival disputants, in a fair and im- 
partial manner, and it will probably be acknowledged 
that there is a good deal to be said on both sides. The 
terms of the Treaty of Union are certainly not so explicit 
as they might have been ; but whatever may have been 
intended, it is certain that, in the relative Order of 
Council, no provision is made with reference to a special 
mode of marshalling in Scotland. If the law appears to 


be somewhat against the position of the remonstrants, 
on the other hand, the practice at least till very re- 
cently has been decidedly in their favour. Everything 
considered, however, it is probably desirable that our 
national achievement should be the same in every corner 
of the kingdom, 1 and that no unnecessary alteration 
should be made which is, in the least degree, calculated 
to perpetuate national distinctions. The union of 1603 
was a union of two independent kingdoms a mere union 
of their crowns ; but a hundred years later, it was a 
union of these two kingdoms into one. By such United 
Kingdom we incline to think that only one unvarying 
armorial achievement can, with perfect propriety, be used ; 
and even on the plea of our more ancient monarchy, 
and of our having furnished a sovereign to England on 
the death of the "Virgin Queen," we could hardly claim 
precedency for the arms of Scotland. 2 Perhaps, indeed, 
it might be urged that the retention of her distinctive 

1 The conclusion at which we have Supervision and similarly independent 
arrived appears to be quite com- departments on the other the prece- 
patible with the opinion expressed in dency being given to England in the 
a previous chapter with reference to former, and to Scotland in the latter 
the precedency of the Lord Lyon instances. We are very much dis- 
(.</>ra, p. 34) ; in other words, the posed, however, to question the pro- 
giving the preference, in the national priety of such a flexible arrangement, 
achievement, to the arms of Scotland 2 Instead of repeating the arms of 
in that country, does not seem to England in the fourth quarter of the 
constitute one of the " other heraldic national escutcheon, it has been pro- 
analogies " there referred to. posed that some suitable device should 

It has been suggested that there be introduced to represent the vast 

might be a distinction in the mode colonial possessions of Great Britain, 

of marshaDing the royal arms, in the Another course would be to assign the 

case of the Post Office and other fourth quarter to the arms of Wale*, 

imperial departments in Scotland on viz. , quarterly, gules ando?', four lions 

the one hand, and of the Board of passant gardant counterchanged. 


Great Seal is more than Scotland was legally entitled 
to, and that it ought to have been absolutely abolished. 
Like the Scottish crown and sceptre, however, let it 
be carefully preserved as a token of her ancient inde- 
pendence; 1 and, while we justly cherish the recollections 
of our bygone nationality, let us be thankful for our 
thorough incorporation with the mightiest empire in the 
world honestly acknowledging that, even on this side 
of the Tweed, heraldic precedence ought to be granted 
to England, 2 in accordance with the sentiment of certain 
well-known classical lines : 

" The Lion and the Unicorn 

Were fighting for the crown ; 
The Lion beat the Unicorn 
All round the town !" 

1 See a curious dialogue between Kingdom by the word England, 

Lord Redesdale and Mr. (afterwards which is at once an incorrect and 

Lord) Brougham relative to the unconstitutional application of terms, 

crown of Scotland, at the discussion, If our northern countrymen object 

before the Privy - Council, of the to calling themselves Britons on the 

rival claims of the Duke of Hamilton continent of Europe, at any rate let 

and Lord Douglas to bear the said them substitute Scotchmen for Eng- 

crown at royal processions. Bal- lishmen, and in most places, particu- 

four's Antiquarian and Heraldic larly in France, their reception will 

Tracts, Appendix, p. xxxii. not be the less cordial. The poet 

a Such acknowledgement, however, may, if he thinks proper, speak of 

is not intended to imply the slightest the " meteor flag of England ; " but, 

approval of the Cockney fashion of in point of fact, it is Britannia, and 

describing the whole of the United not Albion, that "rules the waves." 



IN the preceding chapters, we have incidentally 
touched upon several of what may be termed the minor 
peculiarities of Scottish heraldry, and we now propose 
to refer to a few other distinctive points, of a somewhat 
miscellaneous character, which have escaped our notice. 

In the course of our observations on the royal arms, 
we alluded to the Double Tressure, "flowered and 
counterflowered," which surrounds the rampant lion of 
Scotland, and which has been termed the " bordure of 
Scotland," in consequence of its frequent occurrence in 
the heraldry of that portion of the kingdom. " The 
word," says Sir George Mackenzie, is " Trescheur in the 
French, which comes from Tressouer or Tressoir, a 
Tressing ; and I conceive that these tresses, were intro- 
duced in heraldry upon coat-armours to represent the 
silver and gold laces with which coats are usually 
adorned." 1 The Tressure constitutes one of the sub- 
ordinaries, and is generally regarded as a diminutive of 
the Orle. It may be single, double, or even triple, but 
it is almost invariably borne double, and usually " flory 
counterflory." As exhibiting instances of the single 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap, xxxiv. 


treasure (flory), we may mention the seals of William 
Livingstone of Balcastell (1469), David, William, and 
John Charteris (1474-1584), and Sir James Hamilton of 
Finnart (1532). 1 The earliest examples of the double 
tressure in Mr. Laing's Catalogue are furnished by 
the seals of Alexander Dunbar, third son of Patrick, 
seventh Earl of March (c. 1260), John, Earl of Caithness 
(1292), and Henry Ferniridrauch (1292). 2 The design 
on the last-mentioned seal is not on a shield, and con- 
sists of a lion coiled within a double tressure flowered ; 
while in the two other instances the tressure is both 
flowered and counterflowered. The seals of the follow- 
ing century furnish several examples of the double 
tressure, invariably both flowered and counterflowered, 
of which we may specify those of Thomas Eandolph, 
Earl of Moray (1314), Thomas Fleming (1366), and 
William (first Lord ?) Seton (1384). 3 When the tressure 
is impaled, it ought always to be omitted, like the 
bordure, on the side next the line of impalement ; but 
occasional examples of a complete tressure in impaled 
shields occur as late as the middle of the fifteenth 
century, as on the seal of Mary of Gueldres, Queen of 
James n. (1459.) 4 

In several instances, the double tressure has been 
granted, as an honourable augmentation, to the Scottish 
noblesse, and more especially to those descended from 
daughters of the royal house. " By our ancient and 

'Laing's Catalogue, Nos. 535, 3 Ibid. Nos. 690, 337 and 738 ; also 

172-4, and 403. Plate xi. fig. 8. 

2 Ibid. Nos. 288, 149, and 330. 4 I/>id. No. 48. 


modern practice," says Nisbet, "the* double tressure is not 
allowed to be carried by any subject, without a special 
warrant from the sovereign, and that in these two cases : 
first, to those who were descended of daughters of the 
royal family, and so to them it is a tessera of a noble 
maternal descent, as the orle is to the Spaniards, And, 
secondly, to those who have merited well of their king 
and country, as a special additameut of honour." 1 Again, 
according to Sir George Mackenzie, " it is a rule in the 
heraldry of all nations, and in use with us, that no part 
of the royal bearing can be bestowed by the Lyon, 
without a special order from the Prince (Colomb. cap. 
des brisurs, p. 74). And this may reprehend the error 
of some of our heralds, who have given the tressure-flori 
counterflori to private persons without a warrant." 2 

As examples of families bearing the double tressure in 
virtue of their royal maternal descent, Nisbet mentions 
the Randolphs, Earls of Moray, the Lyons, Earls of 
Strathmore, the Kennedys, Earls of Cassilis, the Grahams 
of Fintry, and the Murrays, " especially those of Tulli- 
bardine and Athol." He also mentions the Erskines, 
Earls of Kellie, the Ramsays, Earls of Holderness, and 
the Scots of Thirlstane, as carrying the same honourable 
charge, on account of "special services to their king and 
country ;" and refers to its presence in the achievement 
of the Setons, Earls of Winton, on the double ground of 
" maternal descent and merit," 3 The special concession 

1 System of Heraldry, i. 180. paternal arms on account of royal 

2 Science of Heraldry, chap. ii. descent, a special coat of augineuta- 
See also chap. xxi. tion (already referred to) was granted 

3 In addition to the tressure in his to Sir Alexander Seton, Governor of 

2 F 


of James v. to John' Scott of Thirlstane, in the year 
1542, refers to his loyalty and ready services " at Sautra 
edge, with three score and ten launcieres on horsback," 
and directs the Lyon Herald and his deputies for the time 
being " to give and to graunt to the said John Scott ane 
border of fleure-de-lises, about his coatte of armor, sic as 
is on our royal banner, and alsua ane bundell of launces 
above his helmet, with thir words, Readdy, ay Readdy." 1 

" From far St. Mary's silver wave, 

From dreary Gamescleuch's dusky height, 
His ready lances Thirlstane brave 

Arrayed beneath a banner bright. 
The tressured fleur- de-luce he claims 
To wreathe his shield, since royal James, 
Encamped by Fala's mossy wave, 
The proud distinction grateful gave, 

For faith, 'mid feudal jars ; 
What time, save Thirlstane alone, 
Of Scotland's stubborn barons none 

Would march to southern wars ; 
And hence, in fair remembrance worn, 
Yon sheaf of spears his crest has borne ; 
Hence his high motto shines revealed 
' Ready, aye Ready ' for the field." 2 

Berwick, c. 1320, viz., a sword sup- For the ' rival strictures on this 
porting an imperial crown, within grant, see Napier's History of the 
the royal tressure, " to perpetuate to Partition of the Lennox, p. 217, and 
posterity the memory of his own Riddell's Answer, p. 79. 
and his progenitors' worthy actions Nisbet mentions two special in- 
for their king and country." System stances of grants of the royal tressure 
of Heraldry, i. 233. According to to foreigners, the one, by James v., 
Sir George Mackenzie, the sword to Nicolas Combet of Dieppe, in the 
supporting the crown was carried by year 1 529, and the other, by James 
the Setons of Barns, because these vi., to Jacob Van-Eiden, a Dutch- 
lands were at first granted with that man, on the occasion of his knight- 
coat of augmentation. hood. System of Heraldry, i. 180. 
1 Plate xiv. fig. 5. - Lay of the Last Minstrel, iv. 8. 


The double tressure is displayed in the arms of the 
" fair city " of Perth, and of the good town of Aberdeen, 
having been granted to the inhabitants of " Bon Accord " 
on account of their loyal services against the English. 
It also appears in the escutcheons of the following 
families : The Gordons, Marquises of Huntly and Earls 
of Aberdeen, the Flemings, Earls of Wigton, the Living 
stones, Earls of Linlithgow, the Maitlands, Earls of 
Lauderdale, the Montgomeries, Earls of Eglinton, the 
Charterises, Earls of Wemyss, the Primroses, Earls of 
Rosebery, the Bellendens, Lords Bellenden, 1 the Edmon 
stones of Duntreath, the Dick-Lauders of Bass and 
Fountainhall, the Buchanans of that Ilk, the Grahams 
of Balgowan, the Lundins of that Ilk, 2 and several 
branches of the Houses of Stewart and Dunbar. In the 
coat of the Marquis of Huntly, the tressure is flowered 
with fleurs-de-lis within, and adorned with crescents (for 
Seton) without ; while in that of the Earl of Aberdeen, 
it is flowered and counterflowered with thistles, roses, and 
fleurs-de-lis alternately. 

Dallaway refers to the circumstance of Upton describ- 
ing the orle " by the word tractus or trace, which when 
florette (he remarks) is a tressure single or double, and 
is a bearing almost peculiar to Scottish families." 3 As 
already incidentally stated, the orle is of very frequent 
occurrence in Spanish heraldry, being granted by the 
sovereign, like the tressure in Scotland, as a special 

1 Now represented by the Duke -Bellenden do not find a place, 
of Roxburgh, in whose achievement, 2 See p. 92, supra. 

however, the armorial ensigns of 3 Heraldic Inquiries, p. 409. 


augmentation of honour. It is usually composed of the 
royal lion and castle alternately, and occurs vert and 
argent, in the windows of Merton College, Oxford, in 
commemoration of the alliance between Edward I. and 
Eleanor of Castile. When bezants and other small 
charges are borne orleways, they ought rather to be 
blazoned as " eight bezants in orle " than as " an orle of 
bezants." An example of this style of bearing occurs in 
the well-known escutcheon of the Valences, Earls of 
Pembroke, viz., barry of twelve, argent and azure, over 
all nine martlets in orle, gules. 

The well-known heraldic charge termed a Gyron is 
supposed to be of Spanish origin, as the word in that 
language signifies a gusset, or triangular piece of cloth. 
It is of frequent occurrence in armorial bearings all 
over Europe, particularly in Spain, where it is carried 
by several distinguished families, including the House of 
Giron, from which the Dukes of Ossuna are descended. 
It also forms a pretty prominent figure in Scottish 
heraldry, where, however, as in England, gyrons are 
never carried otherwise than forming the pattern called 
" gyronny," in which the usual number of pieces is eight, 
although in England they are occasionally ten, twelve, 
and even sixteen. "Gyronny of eight" appears to be the 
favourite arrangement in Scotland, as in the escutcheon 
of the Campbells, where the tinctures are usually or and 
sable. It is also borne by the surnames of Matthew and 
Matthison (sable and gules), and by certain branches of 
the family of Spence (arg'ent and azure}. Sir George 
Mackenzie considers that a more correct blazon is by the 


ordinary Hues, viz., party per pale, fess, and bend dexter 
and sinister said to be derived from the sword-cuts re- 
ceived by the shield in action which the French express 
by the terms "parti, coupe, tranche, taille." The gyron 
upon which the tinctures ought to begin is the uppermost 
on the dexter side, i.e., the first of the four triangles 
above the horizontal line which crosses the fess point of 
the escutcheon. Sometimes, however, the tinctures are 
erroneously made to begin on the second of these four 
triangles, as in several achievements of the Campbells 
engraved in Nisbet's Heraldry, to which the author 
specially alludes. 1 The rare blazon of gyronny of six 
occurs in the escutcheon of the English family of Callard, 
in which case, contrary to the general rule, the tinctures 
do not begin in the first of the three uppermost com- 
partments, but in the second, or middle, compartment, 
" because it possesses," according to Nisbet, " the most 
part of the chief, and the other but a cantle or lesser part 
of it." 2 Party per saltire is sometimes called gyronny of 
four, but this has been properly regarded as an objection- 
able blazon, " not only as being unnecessary, but because 
in English (and Scottish) armory one of the lines forming 
the pattern called gyronny should ever be in fess." 3 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. i. ; 2 Ibid, i. 27. 

Plates 5, 6, 7. Towards the commencement of the 

The same mistake has, imfortu- sixteenth century, the services of 

tiately, been made at pp. 96 and 105 John Callard, an English adventurer, 

of this volume, where the Argyll and were acknowledged by Ferdinand 

Breadalbane coats are represented and Isabella granting him a new coat 

as sable and or, instead of or and of arms, viz., gyronny of six, or and 

sable, and the arms of Loudon gules sable, on each of the tirst a Moor's 

and ermine, instead of ermine and head, couped, proper. 

3 Glossary of Heraldry, p. 155. 


Armorial analogies are much more frequent in Scottish 
and French than in Scottish and Spanish heraldry. In 
noticing the fact that most nations are distinguished by 
certain heraldic peculiarities, Sir George Mackenzie refers 
to the " Ave Marias, I.H.S., and such other devout 
characters/' in the shields of the Spaniards ; to the 
" emblems and witty hieroglyphics," in the arms of the 
Italians ; to the numerous quarteririgs of the Germans, 
" who are vain (he says) of nothing so much as of their 
pedigrees ; " and to the strange charges of the Poles and 
Danes, " wild and monstrous as the people are who bear 
them ! " " But the French," he continues, " who are great 
artists, wherever they study, do suffer their natural 
volageness to be confined and fixed by rules of art ; and 
the Scots, to express their friendship to the French, 
have, of old, imitated them in their heraldry, as much as 
we do the English, since we were happily united with 
them under one monarchy." 1 Thus, while the English 
heralds affirm that if there be more than one Chevron in 
a shield, the proper term is Chevronel ; " but the French 
say three chevrons, and why not three chevrons as well 
as three bends, bars, etc. ? The French mark one, three, 
four, or five chevrons at pleasure, and in this, as in many 
other things, we follow the French." 2 Accordingly, the 
old Earls of Strathern bore or, two chevrons gules, while 
the Maclellans carry two chevrons sable on the same 

Again, the small circular charges called Roundles or 
Roundlets, are distinguished in English heraldry by 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. i. 2 H,id. chap. xiv. 


different names, according to their tinctures when or 
being termed bezants ; argent, plates ; gules, torteaux ; 
azure, hurts ; vert, pomeys (.Fr. pommes); sable, ogresses, 
pellets, or gunstones ; pur-pure, golpes ; sanguine, guzes ; 
and tenne, oranges. In both France and Scotland, how- 
ever, gold and silver roundles are indiscriminately called 
bezants? and all the rest torteaux, the tincture being 
always added. In alluding to the multiplicity of the 
English terms, Colombier remarks : " C'est plus tost 
obscurir la science que l'eclairir, c'est pourquoy je ne 
scaurois approuuer ces terms bigiarres d'Angleterre." 

The number of the Ordinaries, or principal heraldic- 
charges, does not appear to have ever been precisely 
fixed. English heralds usually enumerate nine, which 
they call " honourable," viz., the chief, pale, bend, bend 
sinister, fess, bar, cross, saltire, and chevron ; while the 
French generally reckon them as ten, excluding the 
bend sinister, and adding the bordure and the orle. 
Although he does not expressly say so, Sir George 
Mackenzie appears to follow the French classification, 
seeing that he treats of the bordure and orle before the 
cross and saltire. 2 Nisbet, on the other hand, adopts 

1 The bezant represents a coiu of 2 Some writers consider that the 

Byzantium, and was probably intro- ordinaries represent the various parts 

duced into English and Scottish her- of a warrior's armour, the chief bear- 

aldry by the crusaders. " Of late," iug reference to the helmet, the pale 

says Mackenzie, " they are borne by to the lance, the bend to the shoulder- 

sm-h as have been raised by being belt, the cross to the sword, the fess 

Treasurers or Customers, for these to the scarf, and the chevron to the 

bezants are still of metal." Science spurs : " but this," says Mackenzie, 

of Hvraklry, chap, xviii. (See the " is but a conjecture or fancy, and 1 

arms of the family of Pitt, #upra, rather think that these have been in - 

p. 135.) vented to be different marks of dif- 


the English mode of reckoning, his reason being, to use 
his own words, that "since our heralds have followed 
the English in numbering the ordinaries, so shall I." It 
is somewlmt strange, however, that he does not advert to 
Sir George Mackenzie's mode of treatment. 

The extensive effects of the ancient alliances between 
Scotland and France are strikingly illustrated in the re- 
cent elaborate work of M. Francisque-Michel. 1 The long 
and constant intercourse between the two countries, the 
French origin of several of our oldest Scottish families, 
and the settlement in France of many natives of Scot- 
land during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, neces- 
sarily resulted in numerous instances of heraldic analogy. 
The pages of the learned work to which we have just 
referred abound with illustrative examples, and, besides 
the arms of many other families mentioned in the text, 
embrace upwards of a hundred engravings of French 
blazons. Among these, we find the following Scottish 
surnames : Hay, Scott, Grant, Gray, Forbes, Stewart, 
Ramsay, Spens, Blair, Douglas, Murray, Hume, Sonier- 
ville, Hamilton, and Macdonald. A large number of the 
remaining blazons pertain to surnames, of most of which 
it is almost unnecessary to specify the Scottish counter- 
parts ; such as Frezel (Fraser), Menypeny (Monypeny), 
Conyghan (Cunyngham), Locart (Lockhart), Quinemont 
(Kynyumond), Le Vincton or Leviston (Livingstone), 

f ere nt qualities in the bearer ; as, for ' Lot Ecussai* en France, les /'raw- 
example, the chief rewards those raw en Ecosse, 2 vols. A supplemen- 
actions which are the product of wit, tary volume, embracing an index to 
the cross, religious exploits, etc." the whole work, is understood to be 
Science of Heraldry, chap. ix. in the course of preparation. 


Tournebulle (Turnbull), Coqueborne (Cockburn), Acquet 
(Halket), Vulcob (Wauchope), Anstrude (Anstruther), 
Oillamson (Williamson), and Hellibarton (Halyburton). 
In the large majority of the blazons, the resemblances to 
the charges carried by the Scottish families of corre- 
sponding surnames are very marked. Thus, while one 
branch of the Scotts bears d'or, a trois tetes de lions 
arrachees de gueules, lampassees d'azur ; the arms of 
another branch of the same family consist of d'or, au 
cerf naturel en repos, ayant un collier d'azur, charge d'uri 
croissant entre deux etoiles d'or. 1 As other interesting- 
examples of heraldic analogy, we may specify the fol- 
lowing : , 

Grant de gueules, a trois courounes d'or antiques. 
Ramsay d'argent, a 1'aigle de sable, becquee de gueules. 
Somerville d'azur, a trois molettes d'or, et sept croix recroisete'es, 

au pied fichd d'argent. 

.Anstrude coupe", emmanche' de sable, sur ai'gent de trois pieces. 
Leviston de sable, a trois quintefeuilles d'argent. 
Coqueborne d'argent, a trois coqs de gueules. 2 

Another curious point of resemblance between our 
countrymen and the French is furnished by the custom, 
which at one time prevailed in both countries, of land- 
owners signing by the names of their estates, instead of 
by their Christian names and surnames. The latest sta- 
tute relative to the jurisdiction of the Lord Lyon (1672, 
c. 21), declares "that it is only allowed for Noblemen 
and Bishops to subscribe by their titles ; and that all 

1 Le Ecoxxais en France, Engrav- - Ibid. Xos. 11, 35, 94, 72, 39, 

ings, Xos. 76 ;m<l 10. ;in<l 65. 


others shall subscribe their Christned names, or the initial 
letter thereof, with their surnames, and may, if they 
please, adject the designations of their lands, prefixing 
the word ' OF ' to the said designations." ] To this day, 
however, in many parts of Scotland particularly where 
their surnames happen to be common in the locality 
the custom of speaking of landed gentlemen by the names 
of their estates is by no means rare. 2 In like manner, it 
appears from De la Roque that, towards the end of the 
sixteenth century, the practice in question was checked in 
France by means of legislative interference. " On a veu," 
he remarks, " des gentils-hommes signer du nom de leurs 
seigneuries et non pas de celuy de leurs families. Comme 
c'est un abus considerable, les Estats do Blois tenus en 
1579, art. 211, deffendireut a tous gentils-hommes de 
signer dans les actes et contracts aucun autre nom que 
celuy de leur famille, a peine de nullite." 3 

The term Master, as frequently applied to the heir- 
apparent in the lower orders of the Scottish Peerage, is 
probably another instance of the adoption of a French 
fashion. " The title of Master," says Mr. Riddell, " in 

1 Notwithstanding the ordinary whom, at the present moment, no 
practice to the contrary, two English fewer than nine out of thirteen bear 
peers, Lords BeauchampandBayning, territorial designations, viz., the Lord 
are in the habit of prefixing to their Justice-General (Colonsay), the Lord 
titular signatures the names which Justice-Clerk (Glencorse), Lords Cur - 
they, or their predecessors, assumed riehill, Benholme, Ardmillan, Kin- 
by sign-manual the one signing as loch, Jerviswoode, Orinidale, and 
" Pyndar Beau champ," and the other Barcaple. 

by the still more singular style of 3 Traite de, COriylne des Noinn, 

"William Powlett Bayning." p. 99. The same author also refers, 

2 The same custom is also to be at p. 183, to a similar ordinance 
traced in the judicial titles of several by the States -General, at Paris, in 
members of the Scottish bench, of the year 1014. 


reference to noble families, was, upon the whole, peculiar 
to us, but common in some degree to France, from whence 
we derived several legal terms and usages ; and where 
the next collateral heir to the crown was styled ' Mon- 
sieur/ We discover the epithet in Scotland at least at 
the beginning of the fifteenth century, when it was borne 
by the heirs-apparent of noblemen of the first class. The 
grandson and heir of that hoary aspirant, Walter Earl of 
Athol, who contrived the murder of James i., was called 
' Robert, Master of Athole/ and other such instances can 
be given. The title, as will be seen, was separately con- 
ferred under the appellation of ' dignitatem Magistri de 
Forrester/ in a re-grant of the barony of Forrester, in 
1651, upon the heirs-apparent of George Lord Forrester. 
Sometimes, however, in accordance also with French 
usage, the eldest son of a baron took the second baronial 
title of the family. Thus Alexander Elphinstone, the 
eldest son of Alexander Lord Elphinstoue, in the reign of 
James vi., had the style of Lord Kildrummie, a feudal 
dignity of more recent constitution than Elphinstone." ' 
The mode of disposing charges in a shield of arms is a 
matter of considerable importance in the eyes of skilful 

1 Peerage and Conxistorial Laiv, they wanted a title they took this, 

i. 113. For their father being Lord, there 

"With us," says Sir George Mac- was no degree below to take, as the 

kenzie, " the eldest sons of Lord elder sons of Earls took that of Lord. 

Barons are designed Masters, as the . . . The Grecian emperor was called 

Master of Ross, etc. And, of old, icvpios, and the eldest son SfffworTjs ; 

the nncles of Lords, after the death and from this title of Master came 

of their elder brother, though he left Maship (i.e., Mastership) amongst us, 

a son, were called Masters, till the which was given to all such as had 

nephew had a son : for which I know not a special title, as Lord, Sir, etc." 

no other reason, but that because Treatise on Precedency, chap. viii. 


heralds. Almost everybody knows that the dexter side 
of the escutcheon is regarded as more honourable than 
the sinister, just as the chief, or upper portion, takes pre- 
cedence of the base, or lower part. According to Sir 
George Mackenzie, the preference of the dexter arises 
from " the general opinion that men have that the heart 
is in the right side (!), and that therefore the right side 
in man is strongest, and so he has made it the noblest 
side in all other things." 1 Unless they happen to -be 
represented " affronte" (i.e., facing the spectator, like the 
lion in the royal crest of Scotland), animate charges 
ought invariably to be turned towards the dexter. 2 In 
like manner, the proper position of certain inanimate 
objects appears to be regulated by heraldic practice. 
Thus, in the case of bugle-horns a very frequent charge 
the mouth-piece, at least in Scotland, is almost always 
turned towards the dexter. 3 No such inflexible rule 
appears to be followed in England, as it appears, from 
the Oxford Glossary of Heraldry, that " the mouth-piece 
is as often turned one way as the other." It must be 
bornt in mind, however, that the rule in question is 
occasionally subject to considerable modification. Thus, 
in the words of Sir George Mackenzie, " when beasts are 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xix. piece at Holyrood, to which we have 

2 Occasionally, however, a depar- already referred (supra, p. 210). 
tare from this rule is to be met with 3 A slight departure from this ar- 
on ancient buildings and elsewhere. rangement occurs in the escutcheon 
Thus, the lion of Scotland is repre- of Abbot Hunter (supra, p. 265), 
sented contourne, or turned towards where the mouth-pieces of the two 
the sinister, on a shield surmounting bugle-horns hi chief point towards 
the south doorway of Melrose Abbey; each other, that of the horn in base, 
and the same arrangement occurs in however, being turned to the dexter 
one of the escutcheons on the altar- side of the shield. 


to be painted upon banners, the noblest position is to 
look to the staif, because that is the support of the 
banner; if upon houses that have chimneys, the noblest 
position is to look to the fire, because generally the wor- 
thiest persons are placed next to the fire ; if there be no 
chimney, the noblest posture is to be placed looking from 
the door ; if upon caparisons, they ought to look to the 
head of the horse, or beast that bears them." 1 

In former times, it appears "to have been an accepted 
rule among heralds that illegitimate children should not 
bear either the arms or the surname of their reputed 
fathers. The usual practice was for such persons either 
to carry the bearings " which they got from the sove- 
reign, or those of their mothers or wives, being noble." 5 
Thus, William Longespee, natural son of Henry n. -by 
" Fair Rosamond," displayed a long sword upon his seal, 
with reference to his name ; and after his marriage to 
the daughter and heiress of D'Eureux, Earl of Salisbury 
(in which title he was confirmed by Richard i.), he took 
the arms of his wife, viz., six white lioncels on an azure 
field. In like manner, Robert, natural son of William 
the Lion, on his marriage to the heiress of Lundin of that 
Ilk, is said to have assumed the name and arms of that 
family. 3 Towards the beginning of the fifteenth century, 
however, it became the practice, all over Europe, for il- 
legitimate children either to alter the position of the 

1 Science of Heraldry, chap. xix. clres (c. 1165) exhibits a knight on 

horseback, in a suit of mascled ann- 

1 Nisbets hi/Ktem of Heraldry, i. -,., i , i , 

our, with a sword in nis right hand, 

and an uncharged shield on his left 
:! The seal of this Robert de Lun- arm. Laing's Catalogue, No. 531. 


charges in their paternal escutcheon, or to debruise such 
charges with certain conspicuous marks, termed macula 
natalium, in order that they might be distinguished from 
lawful issue. Accordingly, one of the natural sons of 
Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy, carried his father's 
arms " coupe en chef et en pointe," i.e., the upper and 
lower parts of the escutcheon were left blank, and the 
bearings placed fesswise ; while another son bore the 
charges in bend, and a third in chevron. A somewhat 
similar course was followed by John de Beaufort, the 
eldest natural son of John of Gaunt, who originally 
bore party per pale, argent and azure (the colours of 
the House of Lancaster), on a bend dexter, the three 
lions of England, with a label of three points charged 
with fleurs-de-lis. In like manner, his kinsman, Sir Roger 
de Clarendon, illegitimate son of the Black Prince, placed 
three separate ostrich feathers the cognizance of his 
illustrious father on a similar bend, the pen of each 
feather being fixed in a scroll. In Brabant, Flanders, 
and various parts of Germany, illegitimate children 
appear to have sometimes carried their paternal arms 
in a canton, either dexter or sinister, the rest of the 
escutcheon being left entirely blank. 

Christyn specifies several other kinds of differences 
used by unlawful issue, but, in recent times, the most 
frequent marks of illegitimacy has been the baton, or 
bastard-bar, which at first appears to have extended dia- 
gonally across the entire shield, as on the seal of John 
Home of Hilton, natural son of Alexander Lord Home, 
Great Chamberlain of Scotland in the reign of James iv. 


The position of the baton does not appear to have been 
uniform, as it occasionally crossed the escutcheon from 
right to left ; but the usual arrangement was from left 
to right. It is generally represented by modern heralds 
as couped at each end (i.e., cut short, so as not to touch 
the extremities of the escutcheon), and invariably occu- 
pies the same position as the bend sinister, of which it 
is about one-fourth in width. In this form, it has been 
specially assigned in England, since the fifteenth century, 
to the illegitimate issue of the royal family one of the 
earliest instances of its occurrence being in the achieve- 
ment of Arthur Plantagenet, Viscount Lisle, natural son 
of Edward iv. The couped baton is also borne, vari- 
ously differenced, by all the illegitimate descendants of 
Charles n., being white in the escutcheon of the Duke of 
Buccleuch, compony argent and azure in that of the 
Duke of Grafton, and red (charged with three roses) in 
the coat of the Duke of St. Albans. Charles Somerset; 
Earl of Worcester, natural son of Henry Beaufort, third 
Duke of Somerset, and ancestor of the present Duke of 
Beaufort, bore his arms debruised with a silver 
baton ; but his eldest son, Henry Earl of Worcester, dis- 
carded the baton, and placed the Beaufort arms upon 
a fess. 

According to Menestrier, a bastard cannot cancel or 
alter the baton without the consent of the chief of the 
family, unless he carries his arms in an oval escutcheon, 
called a cartouch or false shield ; but the son of a bas- 
tard, born in lawful marriage, may use the arms of his 
father and mother quarterly, the baton -sinister being 


placed on the paternal quarters. " As for the continu- 
ance of this mark of illegitimation in arms," says Nisbet, 
" some are of opinion that it should always continue 
with the bastard's descendants by lawful marriages, until 
the sovereign or chief of the family dispense with it. ... 
The general opinion, however (he continues), is that the 
bastard-bar, after three lawful generations, may be borne 
to the right, or omitted without the sovereign's consent, 
and in place thereof some remote mark of cadency 
added." 1 

On Scottish seals of the sixteenth century, a bend 
appears to be a more frequent mark of illegitimacy than 
a baton. Thus, in the second and third quarters of the 
shield on the seal of James Stewart, Earl of Moray, na- 
tural son of James iv. (1520), the arms of Scotland are 
surmounted by a bend sinister, which is also placed over 
the three pales on the seal of Andrew Luridin, "por- 
tioner of Lambinethame " (1575), whose status, however, 
does not appear. 2 Again, in the first and fourth quarters 
of the escutcheon on the seal of James Stewart, Earl of 
Moray and Regent of Scotland, natural son of James v. 
(1567), the arms of Scotland are debruised by a bend 
dexter, which we also find surmounting his paternal 
ensigns (three cinquefoils) on the seal of Sir James Ha- 
milton of Finnart, commonly called the " Bastard of 
Arran" (1528). 3 In like manner, a dexter bend or 
bendlet, deeply engrailed, bruises the Scottish lion in 
the first and fourth quarters of the Regent's shield on 

1 System of Heraldry, i. 108. Seals, Nos. 807 and 552. 

- Laing's Catalogue of Scottish 3 Ibid. Nos. 808 and 402. 


his monumental brass, to which we have already re- 
ferred. 1 Nisbet supposes that, in the case of the Regent, 
the sinister traverse must have been dispensed with by 
Queen Mary ; and adds that, in the escutcheon of the 
Moray family, the anus of Scotland have latterly been 
carried within a bordure conipony, argent and azure. 

The bordure company, or gobonated, has, at certain 
periods, been carried as a mark of illegitimacy, both in 
England and Scotland, while in France it has always 
been used as an ordinary mark of cadency by the 
younger lawful children. After the passing of the Act 
20 Richard II., by which the children of John of Gaunt 
by Katheriue Swinford were legitimated, the eldest son, 
John de Beaufort, to whom we have already referred, 
bore the royal arms within a bordure compony, argent 
and azure ; while Thomas, the second son, carried the 
same coat, with the addition of a fleur-de-lis upon each 
of the blue divisions of the bordure. Mr. Montagu 
remarks that "as the border goboriee was assumed by 
them (or assigned to them) after the Act of legitimation, 
it is probable that such border was not at that period a 
mark of spurious descent, though it subsequently became 
so, at least in England." 2 In like manner, according to 
Nisbet, " the bordure gobonated, or compone, is now a 
mark of bastardy in Britain, by our late practices ;" and 
the same author, in noticing the change in the arms of 
the Lundins of that Ilk, to which we have already 
referred, 3 says that " they took the arms of Scotland, 
within a bordure gobonated, argent and azure, as the 

1 titipra, p. 233. 2 Study of Heraldry, p. 43. 3 Svpm, p. 92. 

2 G 


natural sons of our kings, who have been in use to take 
such bordures since the reign of King James n. of Scot- 
land." 1 He elsewhere observes that "this bordure was 
of old honourable, but of late has fallen into disgrace ; 
... so that it is become more suspicious of being a 
sign of illegitimation than any other figure in heraldry, 
except the baton sinister." 2 The same opinion is expressed 
by Sandford in his Genealogical History of England, 
where he speaks of " the ingratitude of those of this latter 
age " to the memory of certain illustrious families, by 
whom the bordure compony was regarded as an honour- 
able figure, in converting it " to no other use than in 
distinguishing the illegitimate issue from those lawfully 
begotten." On the other hand, Spelman, in his notes 
on Nicolas Upton, asserts that both the baton sinister 
and the bordure gobonated were, of old, the marks of 
illegitimacy in England ; and the same view is taken by 
Christyn in his Jurisprudent ia fferoica. 3 In Scotland, 
however, prior to the middle of the fifteenth century, it 
would appear that the bordure compony was not an 
indication of illegitimate descent. In confirmation of his 
remarks, already quoted, Nisbet informs us that " the 
bordure compony was, of old, in great esteem, in differ- 
encing lawful sons with us ; as by Sir William Wallace 
of Ellerslie, gules, a lion rampant argent, within a 
bordure compony azure and of the second." 4 He else- 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part scent will he found in a recent 
iii. pp. 24, 25. volume of the Lyon Register. Vol. 

2 Ibid. pp. 11, 12. iv. pp. 85, 93 (1845-46). 
Examples of the bordure compony 3 Art. 12, par. 17. 

as an indication of illegitimate de- 4 System of Heraldry, ii. 12. 


where mentions several families who carried their arms 
within a bordure compony, or counter-conipony, without 
any allusion to their being of illegitimate descent in- 
cluding the Dundases of Breast-mill, the Frasers of 
Phoppachy, the Burnets of Balleladies, and a branch of 
the Scotts of Bevelaw. 1 In addition to these examples 
we may mention the Irish Earls of Castle Stuart, and 
the Stewarts of Ardvorlich in Perthshire, respectively 
sprung from sons of Lord James Stewart, only surviving 
son of Murdoch, Duke of Albany, who both place their 
arms within a bordure compony, and whose pedigrees, 
we understand, are entirely unsullied by the stigma of 

In our notice of the Register of Genealogies kept at 
the Lyon Office, 2 incidental allusion was made to Scottish 
Birth-brieves, or Bore-brieves as they were usually styled. 
These documents had the sanction of the King, Privy- 
Council, or Chancellor, but neither their credit nor their 
authority was by any means high. According to Mr. 
Riddell, " they were mere ex parte proceedings, com- 
plaisantly winked at by the Government or the chief of 
the name, commonly in favour of an influential foreigner, 
and abound in error and misrepresentation." 3 The 
family of the great Colbert, Marquis of Seignelay, ob- 
tained one of these fabulous attestations which had, 
moreover, the interposition of an Act of Parliament 4 - 
setting forth their descent from the Cuthberts of Castle- 

1 System of Heralilry, i. 173, 174. Partition of the Lennox," \>. 73. 

2 Supra, p. 82. * 1686, c. 49. See folio edition 

3 Answer to the " History of the of the Scottish Acts, viii. 611. 


hill, and connecting the French secretary with St. Cuth- 
bert ! About the same period, a similar document was 
prepared in favour of Don Joseph Cantelinus, Duke of 
Popoli, in which his descent was deduced " from the line 
of our royal predecessors, Kings and Queens of Scotland, 
by a continued course of pedigree for about 330 years 
before the incarnation of our blessed Saviour." l Some 
forty years previously (1648), the notorious Robert Men- 
teith, " ex-minister of Duddingstone, Jesuit, Public Secre- 
tary, Canon of Paris, historian, etc.," obtained a bore-brief 
from Scotland, certifying his descent from the baronial 
house of Menteith, whose arms he boldly assumed ; 
whereas, in point of fact, his father was an unknown 
Edinburgh burgess, who had netted salmon on the banks 
of the Forth, from which circumstance the " ex-minister" 
had humorously and unsuspectedly introduced himself 
to Cardinal Richelieu as one of the Menteiths of 
Salmonet ! Mr. Riddell refers to an early instance of 
a bore-brief, in the year 1510, which seems to have been 
of a much more trustworthy character than those of a 
later period. On that occasion Francis Forrester, alias 
Pitlard, Herald to his most Christian Majesty, appeared 
before the Daily Council (then the supreme civil court), 
and stated that, although born in France, he was of 


1 The Duke's pedigree, however, culty" of the flood, the dignified 

is entirely eclipsed, in point of auti- Highlander coolly replied that his 

quity, by that of the Laird of Mac- ancestor " had a coble o' his ain ;'' 

nab, who repudiated the idea of and to this day the family of Macnab, 

being sprung from one of the sons of like the Watermen of London, carry 

Noah. On being asked how he con- an open boat in the base of their 

trived to get over the "little dim- escutcheon. 


Scottish descent, being sprung from the House of Cor- 
storphine. His petition for inquiry into the matter was 
remitted to the Clerk -Register and certain Lords, who 
issued warrants to Sir Alexander Forrester of Corstor- 
phine, and other respectable persons connected or ac- 
quainted with the family, to appear and depone as to the 
truth of the allegation. They accordingly found their 
way to Edinburgh, and, being sworn, declared that 
" Franciscum Forrester, alias Pitlard, Heraldum, de pre- 
fata domo recte descendisse .... prout ex vera scientia 
et relatione majorum suorum dedicerunt et noverunt, 
unde arma ejusdem doinus et cognomen gestare meruit." 
After which procedure, due intimation of the fact was 
made to the lieges. 1 

The custom of displaying the arms of deceased persons 
of rank, in churches and on the exterior of their mansion- 
houses, is now of rare occurrence in Scotland. Unlike 
the English Hatchment, which usually only exhibits the 
bearings of the deceased (single or impaled, according to 
circumstances), the Scottish Funeral Escutcheon is in- 
tended to afford evidence of the gentle blood of the 
person to whom it relates, in accordance with the prac- 
tice adopted in France and Germany. It generally con- 
sists of a large black lozenge about six feet square, in the 
centre of which is painted, in proper colours, the complete 
achievement of the deceased, with all its exterior orna- 
ments and badges of honour, surrounded by sixteen 
smaller escutcheons, containing the armorial bearings of 
the families from which he derives his descent the pa- 

1 See Answer, tit *ui>r<i, p. 77. 


ternal ensigns being placed on the right, and the maternal 
on the left side viz., those of his father and mother, his 
two grandmothers, his four great-grandmothers, and his 
eight oreat-great-oTandmothers. This is what is termed 

o o o o 

" complete nobility," or nobility of five descents ; but, 
according to Nisbet, " the number of eight quarters (i.e., 
nobility of four descents), is ordinarily used by our 
heralds, in funeral escutcheons and other monuments of 
honour." l Besides the initials of the name and title or 
designation of the deceased, four mort-heads are placed 
at the corners of the lozenge, the black interstices be- 
tween the various shields being powdered with tears, 
reminding us of the well-known lines of a favourite 
English poet : 

" The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power, 

And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave, 
Await alike the inevitable hour. 

The paths of glory lead but to the grave." 2 

The funeral escutcheon of John, first Duke of Atholl 
(ob. 1724), as engraved by Nisbet, 8 and that of Alex- 
ander, fourth Earl of Balcarres (who died about twenty 
years later), as engraved under the article " Heraldry" 
in the seventh edition of the Encyclopedia Britan- 
nica, afford examples of sixteen quarters. The same 
arrangement also appeared on the funeral achievement 
of the late Countess of Wemyss, 4 as displayed on the 

1 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 3 System of Heraldry, vol. ii. part 

iv. p. 143. j v . 1( . 145. 

4 Margaret, daughter of Walter 

-(i\-a,y'& Elegy In a Country Church- Campbell of Shawfield, and wife of 
yflftfi Francis, seventh Earl of Weniyss. 


family mansion in Queen Street, Edinburgh, in the year 
1850. Sometimes, however, the English mode of merely 
exhibiting the bearings of the deceased, without any 
heraldic proof of descent, is adopted in Scotland, as in 
the case of the late Mr. Adam Urquhart, of the family 
of Craigston, Sheriff of Wigtonshire, on whose house in 
St. .Colme, Street, Edinburgh, an achievement of this 
description was affixed, after his death in 1860 ; and, at 
the present moment, the still more recent demise of 
" Albert the Good" is announced by the hatchments of 
a similar character, which surmount the entrances to 
Holyrood and Balmoral. 

It was our intention to have noticed several other 
peculiarities in the Heraldry of Scotland, but our pre- 
scribed limits have already been greatly transgressed ; 
and we shall draw these fragmentary observations to a 
close by a brief reference to the principal kinds of " goods 
and gear," and other objects, on which armorial ensigns 
have at different periods been displayed. In a preceding 
chapter we have discussed, in considerable detail, the her- 
aldry of Seals, which unquestionably constitute the ear- 
liest and best record of armorial bearings. From the time 
of Edward in. in England and of David n. in Scotland, 
Coins afford valuable illustrations of regal heraldry; 1 
and Silver-plate has long furnished ample scope for 
the exhibition of the engraver's taste in matters armorial. 

1 See chap. xxiv. of an admirable winch we cordially recommend to 

work just published A Manual of the lovers of the " noble science," as 

Heraldry, Historical and Popuhir,by well as to that more numerous class 

the Rev. Charles Boutell, M. A., author of persons who have yet to learn its 

of several works on archaeology interest and importance. 


Books, Portraits, Banners, "Napery," and Equipages, are 
also. well-known media of heraldic display, and, in more 
recent times, Stationery, Seal-rings, Brooches, 1 and other 
personal ornaments exhibit the wide-spread, and occa- 
sionally somewhat questionable patronage of the symbols 
of gentility. The universal mania for collecting " arms, 
crests, and monograms," in the shape of cameos and seal 
impressions, bids fair still further to extend the increas- 
ing interest in the " noble science ; " and in the course of 
another generation, Sir Walter's strictures on the subject 
of heraldic ignorance, to which we referred in the intro- 
ductory chapter, will be perused with unmixed astonish 
ment. But to speak more gravely, independently of the 
display of armorial ensigns on what may be* termed 
"moveable" possessions, their introduction as architectu- 
ral accessories ought probably to be regarded as the 
best and most appropriate occasion for doing- full justice 
to the multifarious devices and combinations which her- 
aldry affords. 2 The suitableness of heraldic figures for 
both the external and internal decoration of churches and 
mansion-houses is again beginning to be appreciated. In 
the words of Professor limes, "the shape of the shield, of 
the knightly banner, and the squire's pennon, the helmet, 
the mantelling, the various accidences and outward orna- 

1 The silversmiths of the Scottish have given abundant evidence of 

metropolis have long occupied a dis- their taste and ability in the execu- 

tingiiished position. As skilful and tion of heraldic dies and monograms, 
accomplished seal-engravers, we may 2 See Boutell's Manual, chapters 

mention the names of Messrs. But- xxii. and xxiii., of which the latter 

ters, Murdoch, and Laing ; while is devoted to the subject of " Monu- 

Messrs. Milne, Waddie, and Caldwell mental Heraldry." 


ments, are capable of the prettiest aud most picturesque 
grouping, and form materials for architectural ornament, 
even independent of the gorgeous colours of the herald 
painter, which it would be a pity to abandon in a country 
where the material and the masons are so excellent as 
here in Scotland. In my opinion, a pannel of Craigleith 
stone, chiselled by an Edinburgh mason, forms as fine a 
key-stone of an arch, or pendant of a vaulted ceiling, as 
the finest marble in the duomo of Milan. But now (he 
very properly continues), if we are agreed as to the 
convenience of heraldic ornaments, is it not worth while 
to bestow a very little study on the 'science' as it 
used to be called the science of heraldry ? It is always 
a dangerous thing to use a language we are ignorant of ; 
and though the Greek or Latin rashly stuck into our 
speeches or our pages may for a time escape learned 
criticism, yet the scholar comes down upon the quotation 
at last, and then the explosion tumbles down more than 
the poor bit of assumed learning, and does damage to 
the whole structure." 1 

The re-introduction of tile pavements and stained- 
glass windows affords the most ample scope for heraldic 
ornamentation, and will, we trust, at no very distant 
period, become a popular and important branch of 
modern art. In the windows of ecclesiastical edifices, 
as well as of halls and libraries in public buildings or 
private mansions, heraldic symbols form at once the 

1 Introductory Address, read at the 1860. Transaction* of the Institute, 
annual meeting of the Architectural vol. v. part iv. p. 44. 
Institute of Scotland, 21st December 


most attractive and appropriate features ; 1 and the vener- 
able pile of St. Kentigern, in the industrial metropolis of 
Scotland, already furnishes abundant evidence of the 
taste and talent which at present exist for the execution 
of such a pleasing style of decoration. 

1 See some very sensible sugges- Cooper and Ballantyne, in the eighth 
tions on the subject in question in edition of the JSntyclopcedia Britan- 
the article on "Glass," by Messrs. nica, vol. x. p. 669. 

" What doth he get, who e'er prefers 

The 'scutcheon of his ancestors 1 

This chimney-piece of gold or brass 

That coat-of-arms blazoned in glass ? 

When these with time and age have end, 

Thy prowess must thyself commend. 

The smooty shadows of some one 

Or other's trophies, carved in stone, 

Defaced, are things to whet, not try 

Thine own heroicism by. 

Forecast how much thy merit's score 

Falls short of those that went before ; 

By so much art thou in arrear, 

And stain'st gentility (I fear). 
True nobleness doth those alone engage, 
Who can add virtues to their parentage." 




No. I. 


[THE following notices of the Lyon Kings-of-Arms of whom, strange 
to state, no record is to be found at the Lyon Office have been care- 
fully prepared, under the belief that they will prove interesting. For a 
good deal of the information, the Author is indebted to his obliging 
friend, Mr. David Laing, of the Signet Library, and also to the labours 
of an anonymous writer in that useful periodical, Notes and Queries. 

It is somewhat remarkable that of the twenty Lyon Kings here 
noticed, no fewer than ten were" connected with the " Kingdom" of 
Fife, viz., four Lindsays, two Erskines, Nairne, Forman, Balfour, and 

1. ALEXANDER NAIRNE of Saintfoord (St. Fort), Co. Fife 

Held the office, according to Sir Robert Sibbald, during the reign of 
James n. (History of Fife and Kinross, 8vo edit. p. 263.) He also 
appears to have been Comptroller of the Household. (Douglas' Peerage, 
ii. 279.) " Alexander Nairne de Sandforde, armiger" (without any 
special designation), is included in various safe-conducts to England, 
between 1446 and 1452. (Rotuli Scotiae, vol. ii. 329 b, 3 4 4-5 a, 
358 a.) The estate of Saudford appears, from the printed Retours, to 
have been in the possession of the Nairne family towards the end 
of the seventeenth century : "Jan. 11, 1670. Alexander Nairne de 
Sanctfuird, h feres Domini Thomse Nairne de Sanctfuird, patris." 


2. DUNCAN DUNDAS of Newlistou, Co. Liulithgow 1450-90. 
Third son of James Dundas of that Ilk, by his first wife (name un- 
known) ; or, according to another authority, second son of Sir James 
Dundas of Fingask, by Elizabeth, daughter of Lord Caledon. " A man 
of great parts." Held the office, according to Sir Robert Douglas, in 
the reigns of James n. and in. (Baronage of Scotland, p. 176), and 
was employed in State negotiations between 1453 and 1484. Safe- 
conducts to "Duncan Dundas de Scotia, armiger," occur between 1451 
and 1485. The "Leo Armorum Rex" mentioned in the Rolls, in 
1485, appears to have been a different person from Dundas, but the 
word " et" between the title and his name may be a mistake in the 
record. He is referred to as Lyon King in Lord Strathallan's Genealogie 
of the House of Drummond (p. 133) in connexion with the year 1484, 
and in Douglas' Baronage, is said to have died between that year and 
1488. His son is mentioned as his heir in 1492 (Acta Dom. Concilii). 
In the existing volume of Treasurer's Accounts (temp. Jac. in.), we find 
a sum paid to the " Lyon Herald " on his journey to London in October 
1473, and again in May 1474 ; also in October 1474 to the "Lyon 
King-of-Anns " no name, however, being given in either case. Men- 
tion is also made, in the same Accounts, of "Unicorn" and "Snadown" 

3. HENRY THOMSON 1504-1512. 

In the Canongate Protocol Books, sasines are recorded in favour of 
Thomson and Cristiua Dowglas, his spouse, dated 1 1th April 1504, 
and 2d March 1505-6. That he was not involved in the calamity at 
Flodden (1513) appears from a deed, dated 15th December 1512, in 
favour of his nephew, " Johannes Thomson, filius fratris et hceres quon- 
dam Henrici Thomson, alias Leouis Regis Armorum." Christina Dow- 
glas is described in the Privy Seal Register as the " relict of uniq le 
Lyon King-of-Armes," 26th January 1513-14. 

4. SIR WILLIAM CUMYNG of Inverallochy, Co. Aberdeen c. 1512. 

Second son of William Cumyng of Culter and Inverallochy (?), by 
Elizabeth, daughter of Sir William Meldrum of Fyvie, and fourth in 
descent from Jardine, second son of William Cumyng, Earl of Buchan, 
who got the lands of Inverallochy from his father in the year 1270. 
(Nisbet's Heraldry, ii. Appendix, p. 57). Sir William appears to have 


held the office of Marchinont Herald in the year 1499 (Reg. Secret! 
Sigilli) ; and the lands of Innerlochy were granted to him and Margaret 
Hay, his spouse, by a charter under the Great Seal, dated 18th Jan- 
uary 1503-4. He was knighted in 1507, and in a charter of glebe 
lands in favour of John Quhyte (31st January 1513), he is described 
as " circumspectus vir Will ms Cumyn de Innerlochy, Rex Armorum 
supremi domini nostri Regis." (General Button's Transcripts, Adv. Lab.) 
His character of " circumspectus " (canny) is thus referred to by Bishop 
Leslie, in connexion with the year 1513 : "Leo fecialis Angli Regis 
responsuru sapienter eludit." (History of Scotland, 1578, p. 361.) In 
a deed dated 17th July 1514, he is styled " Willelmus Cuinyng de 
Iimerallochy miles, alias Leo Rex Armorum ;" and again, in 1518, he 
is designed " Lioun King-of-Armes." 

The following curious account of Cumyng's insult by Lord Drummond, 
in the year 1515 (supra, p. 29), is from the Genealogie of the House 
of Drummond, compiled by the first Viscount Strathallan in 1681, and 
printed about thirty years ago : " John Lord Drummond was a great 
promoter of the match betwixt his own grandchild, Archibald Earle of 
Angus, and the widdow Queen of King James the Fourth, Margaret 
Teudores ; for he caused his own brother, Master Walter Drummond's 
sone, Mr. John Drummond, dean of Dumblane and person of Kinuowl, 
solemnize the matrimonial bond in the Kirk of Kinnowl in the year 
1514. Bot this marriage begot such jealousie in the rulers of the 
State, that the Earle of Angus was cited to appear before the Council, 
and Sir William Cummin of Inneralochy, Knight, Lyon King-at-Armes, 
appointed to deliver the charge ; in doeiug whereof, he seemed to the 
Lord Drummond to have approached the Earle with more boldness than 
discretion, for which he (Lord D.) gave the Lyon a box on the ear ; 
whereof he complained to John Duke of Albany, then newly made 
Governor to King James the Fifth, and the Governor, to give ane 
example of his justice at his first entry to his new office, caused imprison 
the Lord Drummond's person in the Castle of Blackness, and forfault 
his estate to the Crown for his rashness. Bot the Duke considering, 
after information, what a fyne man the Lord was, and how strongly 
allyed with most of the great families in the nation, wes well pleased 
that the Queen-mother and three Estates of Parliament should interceed 
for him ; so he was soone restored to his libbertie and fortune." 

Lord Drummond died in 1519, ?etat. 81. 


5. SIR DAVID LINDSAY of the Mount, Co. Fife c. 1530. 

Born 1490. Great-grandson of Andrew Lindsay of Garleton, in 
East Lothian, who was a natural son of William Lindsay of the Byres. 
Author of the oldest Armorial Register in Scotland ; blazoned in 1542, 
and now in the Library of the Faculty of Advocates (supi-a, pp. 42, 69). 
In an entry in one of the Protocol Books of Haddington, dated 4th 
January 1529, Lindsay is described a,s acting " nomine et ex parte 
Leonis Regis Armorum," along with three others, who are specially 
designed Marchmont, Ross, and Hay "Heralds" respectively. Possibly 
the office of Lyon was then vacant, and Sir David merely performing 
the duties ad interim. His regular appointment, however, is usually 
assigned to the year 1530. He appears to have died without issue 
about the year 1555, when he was succeeded in the estate of the 
Mount by his brother Alexander, father of Sir David Lindsay, who was 
appointed Lyou King in 1591. Celebrated as a poet and a satirist, 
he has been termed the " Scottish Aristophanes ;" and, besides being 
Lyon King-at-Arms under James v., he was "the herald, in a higher 
sense, of almost every improvement, civil and ecclesiastical, that took 
place in Scotland during the succeeding centuries. . . . His works, 
with the national epics, Barbour's ' Bruce ' and Blind Harry's ' Wallace,' 
formed, till very recently, the poetical library of every cottage north of 
the Tweed ;" and the well-known saying, " It 's no between the brods 
(boards) o' Davie Lindsay," implies that not even Sir David, whom 
almost nothing escapes, has noticed the matter in question. 

In his Moral Dialogue, published in 1564, Dr. Boleyn (brother of 
Queen Anne), who had visited Scotland, after describing Chaucer and 
Lydgate, thus paints the Scottish King-at-Arms : " Nexte theiin, in 
a blacke chaine of gette stone, in a coate of armes, satte an anciente 
Knight, in orange-tawnie, as one forsaken : bearyng upon his breast a 
white lion, 1 with a crown of riche golde on his hedde : his name was 
Sir Davie Linse uppon the Mounte, with a hammer of strong steele in 
his hande, breakyng asonder the couuterfeicte Crosse-Kaies of Rome, 
forged by Antichriste. And this good Knight of Scotlande saide to 
Englande the elder brother, and Scotlande the younger 

1 Dr. Boleyn is not the only Eng- about two years ago, by a writer in 
lishman who substitutes argent for the Times, in the course of his critique 
gules in describing the Lion of Scot- upon Mr. Stirling of Keir's Champion- 
land. A similar mistake was made, ship of the Scottish Universities. 


' Habitare fratrea In unum, 

Is a blesfull thyng ; 

One God, one Faith, one Baptisme pure, 
One Lawe, one Laude, one Kyng.' " 

See Chalmers' Life and Works of Sir David Lindsay, vol. i. ; Tytler's 
Scottish Worthies, vol. iii. p. 191 ; and Lord Lindsay's Lives of the 
Lindsays, vol. i. p. 207. 

6. SIR ROBERT FORMAN of Luthrie, Co. Fife c. 1555. 

From the following entry in the Lord High Treasurer's Accounts, 
under date March 24, 1540, it would appear that Forman was ap- 
pointed a Pursuivant in that year : " Item, geviu to Maister Robert 
Forman to by him ane Coit-armour, at his creatioun Persewant, at the 
Kingis command. . . . xli." He filled the office of Ross Herald 
in 1551, and in that capacity, on the 7th of May 1552, he was 
" direct fra the Counsale with certaine articulis to be schawand to the 
King of France and fra him to the Empriour." The same day the 
Treasurer paid him the sum of 400 " to be his expensis in his 
journay." He was appointed to the office of Lyon-King on the death 
of Lindsay in 1555, and is mentioned under that title in the " Diurnal 
of Occurrents," in 1563. Buchanan also thus refers to him as acting 
under the instructions of the Regent in 1559 : "Misit Robertum 
Formauuum, principem fecialem (vulgus Regem Armorum vocat), cum 
his mandatis," etc. (History of Scotland, Bk. xvi. chap, xliii.) 

According to a MS. in the Advocates' Library (A 2. 18), Forman 
" was allowed his fee by Queen Mary, out of the lands of Rathellet, 
which the Lyon King ever since has possessed ; being the King's pro- 
pertie within the Stewartry of Fyffe." He held the office of Lyon- 
King till 1567, but does not appear to have died till several years 
afterwards. On the 18th of February 1594, John Forman, Rothesay 
Herald, was served heir in general of his father " Domini Roberti 
Forman de Luchrie, militis, Leonis Regis Armorum." (Will of Dame 
Elizabeth Creichtoun, who died in May 1594, spouse of umquhile Sir 
Robert Forman, Lyon Herald, in Edinburgh Conf. Testaments, 1596.) 

7. SIR WILLIAM STEWART 1567-78 (20th February). 
Formerly Ross Herald. Within six months after his appointment, 

he was deprived of the office of Lyon-King, being " transported from 

2 H 


Edinburgh Castle to Dimbrittane, and ther committed to closse prissone. 
for conspyring to take the Regent's lyff'e by sorcery and necromancey, 
for which he was put to death." (Balfour's Annals, i. 345. See also 
Birrel's Diary, p. 17.) He was burnt at St. Andrews in August 1569, 
along with Paris, one of the supposed devisers of Darnley's death, on a 
charge of witchcraft, his real offence, however, being opposition to the 
faction of the Regent, and loyalty to Queen Mary. His execution is 
referred to, a fortnight after its occurrence, in a letter from Lord 
Hunsdon to Sir William Cecil. 

8. SIR DAVID LINDSAY (n.) of Rathillet, Co. Fife 1568 (22d 


Youngest brother of Sir David of the Mount (No. 5.), probably by 
a different mother. Previously and successively Dingwall Pursuivant 
and (1561) Rothesay Herald. He was inaugurated as Lyon-King 
with great solemnity, about three weeks after his appointment, in the 
presence of the Regent and most of the nobility. 1 He is described as 
" Sir David Lindesay of Lucheris Kny 1 Liand King of Arnies," in a 
royal letter under the Privy Seal, dated Holyroodhouse, 14th October 
1580. He died in 1591. 

9. SIR DAVID LINDSAY (m.) of the Mount, Co. Fife 1591. 
Son of Alexander Lindsay of the Mount, and nephew of two former 

Lyon-Kings (Nos. 5 and 8). He was appointed, by commission, on 
Christmas-day 1591, and enthroned on Sunday, 2d May 1592, James 
vi. crowning him with the ancient diadem of Scotland, which was used 
before the sovereigns of that kingdom assumed the close crown. (Great 
Seal Rec. Book 37, MS. Adv. Lib.) At the coronation of James vi. in 
1603, he informed Sir William Segar, Garter King at Arms, that, on 
the day of his inauguration, he dined with the King, having the crown 
on his head. On the 31st of March of the same year, he proclaimed 
James vi. King of England, in the presence of the nobility and of Sir 
James Elphinstone, Secretary of State. (Birrel's Diary, p. 68.) A 
volume of his collections, dated 1586, is among the heraldic and 
genealogical MSS. in the Advocates' Library. In 1621, he resigned the 
office of Lyon King in favour of his son-in-law, and died two years 
afterwards, without male issue. 

1 For the old oath of the Lyon King, see Nisbet's System of Heraldry, 
vol. ii. part iv. p. 167. 


10. SIR JEROME LINDSAY of Dunino and Annatlaiitl, Co. Fife 

1621 (June 27). 

Born about the year 1562. Son of David Lindsay, first Protestant 
Minister of Leith, and afterwards Bishop of Ross (who baptized King 
Charles i.), and great-grandson of Walter Lindsay Younger of Edzell, 
who fell at Flodden in 1513. He was educated at St. Andrews, where 
he graduated as Master of Arts. His first wife was Margaret, daughter 
of Mr. John Colville (who died before 10th May 1603), and his second, 
Agnes, eldest daughter and co-heir of his predecessor in the office of 
Lyon King, in whose right he succeeded to the estate of the Mount, 
winch his descendants possessed in a decayed condition till the year 
1710, if not later. (The present representative of the Lindsays of 
of the Mount is settled in America.) The following quaint epitaph on 
Sir Jerome's daughter, Rachel, is from the pen of William. Drummond 
of Hawthornden : 

" To the memorie of the vertuous gentlewoman Rachell Lindsay, Daughter 
of Sir Hierosme Lyndsaj', Principal! King of Armes, and wyfe to Lieutenant 
Colonell Barnard Lindsay, who dyed the . . . day of May, the year 1645, 
after shee had lived . . . yeeres. 

The Daughter of a King, of princely partes, 
In Beautie eminent, in vertues cheife, 
Load-starre of loue, and load-stone of all hartes, 
Her freindes and husbandes onlie joy, now griefe, 
Enclosed lyes within this narrow graue, 
Whose paragone no tymes,'no climates haue. 

Sir Jerome resigned the office of Lyon King in 1630. He was Princi- 
pal Commissary of Edinburgh, and died, at the age of 80, in 1642. 

11. SIR JAMES BALFOUR of Denmiln and Kinnaird, Co. Fife, 
Bart. 1630 (June 15). 

So created in 1633, having been knighted May 2, 1630. He 
was born about the year 1600, and succeeded his father, Sir Michael, 
in the estate of Denmiln in 1652. He was four times married, his 
wives being daughters of Sir John Ay ton of that Ilk, Sir James 
Durham of Pitkerrow, Sir James Arnot of Ferney, and Sir William 
Auchinleck of Balmanno. Sir James was crowned Lyou King by 

1 Arclneohflift Scot ten, iv. 1 14. * 


George, Viscount Dupplin, Chancellor of Scotland (afterwards Earl of 
Kinnoull), as the Royal Commissioner for the ceremonial, in terms of 
the following warrant of Charles i. : 


" Right trustie and wellbelovit cosine and Counsellour, We greit you 
weill. Having preferred our trustie and wellbelovit S r James Balfour 
of Kyunaird Knight to be Our King of Armes in that Our Kiugdome 
of Scotland, and being willing that no honnour belonging to that place 
and office sould be diminished and impaired, It is Our Royal pleasure 
and will that you, with all convenient diligence, inaugurat him with all 
ceremonie dew and requisite, In als goodlie forme and maner and als 
solemnly in all respects as ever ane Lyoune King of Armes has beene 
crowned hiertofore in that our said Kingdorne, for doing quhairof these 
presents sail be to you a sufficient warrand. And We bid you fare- 
well. Frome Our Court at Whitehall, the 20 day of Apryle 1630. 

" From His Majesty to the Lord Chancellor 
anent the Inauguration of the Lyoun." 

In the year 1631, in consequence of a Royal Missive " aneut the 
Lyon's immunity from taxations," a committee was appointed to con- 
sider the claim ; and, in terms of their report, an Act of Exemption 
was passed in favour of Sir James Balfour. The account of his inau- 
guration is preserved in the Advocates' Library, along with his numer- 
ous MSS. relative to Scottish Genealogy and Antiquities. Many of his 
Collections, however, were destroyed or dispersed by the English at the 
capture of Perth, to which place they had been conveyed for safety. 
Balfour discharged the duties of his office with great success till about 
the year 1654, when he was deprived of the dignity, on the usurpation 
of Cromwell, in consequence of his loyal principles. He died at Den- 
miln, three years afterwards, at the age of 57, and was interred at 
Abdie Church. (Lament's Diary, p. 97.) A notice of Sir James Bal- 
four is prefixed to his Annals of Scotland, published at Edinburgh, in 
four volumes 8vo, in 1824 and a selection of his Heraldic and Anti- 
quarian Tracts was edited, in the year 1837, by Mr. James Maidment, 
Advocate. 1 

1 For a detailed list of the various Balfour, see Sibbald's Memoria Bal- 
vvritings and collections of Sir James fouriana, pp. 11, et seq. 


12. SIR JAMES CAMPBELL of Lawers, Co. Perth 1658 (13th 

Appointed to the office of Lyon King-at-Arms by Oliver Cromwell. 

13. GILBERT STEWART 1660 (21st August). 

This gentleman appears to have been very soon superseded by Sir 
Alexander Durham of Largo. In the Ratification in favour of Sir 
Charles Erskine, Sir James Balfour is mentioned as the " immediate 
antecessor" of Sir Alexander Durham, Campbell and Stewart being, of 
course, entirely ignored by Charles n. 

14. SIR ALEXANDER DURHAM of Largo, Co. Fife 1660 (28th 


Third son of Sir James Durham of Pitkerrow, Clerk of the Exchequer 
and Director of the Rolls, by a daughter of Hepburn of Humbie. For 
his loyal services, Durham was knighted by Charles n. ; and besides 
being colonel of a regiment, he was Receiver of the Land-tax in Scot- 
land. He died unmarried, at Edinburgh, in 1663, and was succeeded 
in the estate of Largo by Francis, son of his eldest brother James. 
The lands of Largo were acquired by Sir Alexander from the descendants 
of the celebrated Admiral Andrew Wood, who flourished during the 
reign of James in. Sir Alexander's death is thus recorded in Lament's 
Diary (p. 161) : " 1663. Apr. 27, being Moneday. S r . Alex. Dur 
hame of Largo, in Fyffe, the Lord Lyon, depairted out of this life att 
Edb., and was interred, the 1 of May 1663, att the Kirke of Aberlady, 
nire Lifnesse, his cusing's buriall-place, in the day-tyme." 

lo. SIR CHARLES ERSKINE of Cambo, Co. Fife, Bart. 1663. 

Third son of Alexander, Viscount Feutoun (who died during the 
lifetime of his father, the Earl of Kellie), by Anne, eldest daughter of 
Alexander Seton, Earl of Dunfermline and Chancellor of Scotland. His 
grandfather was Thomas, first Earl of Kellie (nephew of John, Earl of 
Mar and Regent of Scotland), who with his own hand killed Alexander 
Ruthven, brother of the Earl of Gowrie, on the occasion of what is 
usually regarded as the treasonable attempt on King James vi., at Perth, 
in 1 600. Erskine was installed as Lyon King-at-Arms, 25th Septem- 
ber 1663, being crowned by the Earl of Rothes, who acted in the capa- 
city of Royal Commissioner. He was created a Baronet of Nova Scotia 


in 1666, purchased the barony of Cambo three years afterwards, and 
died in 1677. His patent of creation is printed by Sir George Mac- 
kenzie in his Science of Heraldry, chap. ii. ; and the Ratification of 
the office of Lyon King-of-Arms (1672, c. 74), in favour of Sir Charles 
and his son, Sir Alexander, will be found in the folio edition of the 
Acts of the Scottish Parliament, vol. viii, p. 123. 

16. SIR ALEXANDER ERSKINE of Cambo, Co. Fife, Bart. 1677. 

Son and successor of the preceding Lord Lyon, by Miss Barclay of 
London. Married his cousin-german Mary, eldest daughter of Alex- 
ander, third Earl of Kellie. Inaugurated as Lord Lyon at Holyrood, 
27th July 1681, when James Duke of York (afterwards James vn.) 
officiated as High Commissioner for his brother, King Charles n. The 
" Order" observed at his coronation forms Appendix No. x. of Arnot's 
History of Edinburgh. 

In M'Cormick's Life of William Carstares, Secretary to King Wil- 
liam in., and afterwards Principal of the University of Edinburgh, wo 
find the following anecdote, which, it is presumed, relates to Sir Alex- 
ander's son : " Not long after Carstares' commitment to Edinburgh 
Castle, a boy about twelve years of age, son to Erskine of Cambo, 
Lieutenant-governor of the Castle, in the course of his rambles through 
the court, came to the grate of his apartment. As he always loved to 
amuse himself with young people, he went towards the grate, and began 
a conversation with him. The boy was captivated with the gentle and 
engaging manner in which he accosted him ; and, mightily pleased with 
his first interview, he resolved to cultivate his new acquaintance. In a 
day or two after, he returned at the same hour to the grate ; and, in 
the course of a few periodical visits of this kind, he conceived the 
strongest attachment to the prisoner ; would sit by him for hours 
lamenting his unhappy situation, and telling a thousand stories to divert 
him, He would sometimes load his pockets with provisions of different 
-sorts, and oblige him to partake with him. At other times he would 
purchase for him pen, ink, and paper ; and, when he had wrote his 
letters, he would come at night and carry them to the Post Office him- 
self. He was quite unhappy if Mr. Carstares had no errand to send 
him, or no favour to ask. This intimacy subsisted between them so 
long as Mr. Carstares continued in custody ; and, when their inter- 
course was broken oft' by his release, the separation was, attended with 


tears on both sides. It was not many years before Mr. Carstares had 
an opportunity of testifying his gratitude. One of the first private 
favours he asked of King William was, that he would bestow the office 
of Lord Lyon upon his young friend, to whose humanity and kind offices 
he had owed his chief consolation in his deepest distress ; and he ob- 
tained his request, with this additional compliment, that it should be 
hereditary in the family." 1 Accordingly, in the year 1702, Sir Alex- 
ander had a Commission, under the Great Seal, of the office of Lord 
Lyon King-at-Arms to himself and his son, of which there was a Rati- 
fication in 1707 (c. 23.) See Scottish Acts, xi. 465. 

Owing to his participation in the "Rising" of 1715 (when he 
joined his kinsman, the Earl of Mar), the hereditary grant probably did 
not take effect. The date of his deprivation or resignation does not 
appear, but it is supposed to have been long before his death, which 
took place in 1735. (Douglas' Peerage, ii. 21.) 

17. ALEXANDER BRODIE of that Ilk, Co. Elgin 1727 (6th July). 

Son of George Brodie of Aslisk, by Emelia, daughter and co-heir 
of James Brodie of Brodie Born 1697. Married, in 1724, Mary 
Sleigh, and died 1754. (Nicolas' Orders of Knighthood, and Burke's 
Landed Gentry, 1849, iii. 38.) 2 

18. JOHN HOOKE-CAMPBELL of Bangeston, Co. Pembroke 1754 

(3d April). 

Second son of John Campbell of Cawdor Castle, Nairnshire a cadet 
of the House of Argyll, and ancestor of the Earls of Cawdor by Mary, 
eldest daughter and co-heir of Lewis Pryse, Esquire. He was appointed 
Lord Lyon jointly with his younger brother Alexander, a Lieutenant- 
Colonel in the Army, by whom, however, none of the duties of the 

1 State Papers and Life of Car- Lords Lyon of the Order of the 
stares, p. 22. Thistle from 1687, as given in Ni- 

2 Two other Lyon Kings are men- colas' Orders of Knighthood, vol. iii., 
tioned by Noble in his History of tJie Appendix to " Thistle," xxxvi. As 
English College of Arms ([>. 407), as suggested by " A. S. A." in Notes 
holding the office between Sir Alex- and Queries (2d Series, v. 497), they 
ander Erskine and the Laird of may have filled the office of Lyon- 
Brodie, viz., Cocherne (Cochrane ?) Depute, probably between the in- 
and Alficander Drummoml ; but nei- cumbeney of Robert Innes and John 
ther of them appears in the list of Dundas. (See Appendix, No. ii.) 


office were discharged. By his wife Eustacia, daughter and co-heir of 
Francis Basset of Heanton Court, Devonshire, Mr. Hooke-Campbell had 
three daughters. He resided chiefly at Bath, where he died, 8th Sep- 
tember 1795, in consequence of a fall over the St. Vincent rocks on the 
Avon, whither it is supposed he had gone to gratify his favourite pursuit 
of sketching, in which he excelled. Having been predeceased by his 
brother Alexander, in 1785, the reversionary grant of the Lyonship in 
his favour did not, of course, take effect. 

19. ROBERT-AURIOL DRUMMOND-HAY, ninth Earl of Kinnoull, 

etc., in the Peerage of Scotland, and Baron Hay of Ped- 
wardine in that of Great Britain 1796 (26th May). 

Born 1751. Eldest son of Robert Hay-Drummond, Archbishop of 
York, by Henrietta, daughter of Peter Auriol, Esquire, of London, and 
grandson of George-Henry Hay, seventh Earl of Kinnoull, and first 
Baron Hay of Pedwardine. Lord Kinnoull's Commission was in favour 
of himself, with remainder to his son Thomas-Robert, Viscount Dupplin, 
by whom he was accordingly succeeded, in the office of Lord Lyon, at 
his death in 1804. 

20. THOMAS-ROBERT DRUMMOND-HAY, tenth Earl of Kinnoull, 

etc. 1804 (12th April). 

Born 1785. Son of the preceding Lord Lyon, by Sarah, daughter 
and co-heir of the Right Hon. Thomas Harley, and grand- daughter of 
Edward, third Earl of Oxford. Lieutenant and Sheriff- Principal of the 
county of Perth. Married, in 1824, Louisa-Burton, second daughter of 
Admiral Sir Charles Rowley, Bart., G.C.B., by whom he has surviving 
issue, three sons and three daughters. 

No. II. 


1. ROBKRT INNES, Writer to the Signet (?) 

Acting in 1681 at the coronation of Sir Alexander Erskiue, Lord 
Lyon. (Arnot's History of Edinburgh, Appendix, No. x.) 


2. JOHN DUNDAS, Writer to the Signet. 1 

Father of David (?) Dnndas of Ducldingston, Co. Liulithgow. Ap- 
pointed 1st February 1728. 

3. THOMAS DUNDAS, younger of Fingask, Co. Perth. 
Appointed 18th June 1744. 

4. THOMAS BRODIE, Writer to the Signet. 
Appointed 7th September 1754. 

5. ROBERT BOSWELL, Writer to the Signet. 

Appointed 2d November 1770. Held the office of Lyon-Clerk as 
well as of Lyon-Depute. Mr. Boswell also acted as interim Lord Lyou, 
under a nomination from the Exchequer, from 17th December 1795 to 
Gth August 1796. 

6. JAME> HOME of Linhouse, Co. Edinburgh, Writer to the Signet. 

Appointed 8th August 1796. Acted both as Lyon-Depute and Lyon- 
Clerk from the year 1804. 

7. DAVID CLYNE, Solicitor before the Supreme Courts. 

Appointed interim Lyon-Depute 21st February 1819, on the death 
of Mr. Home. Also interim Lyon-Clerk. 

8. GEORGE TATT, Advocate. 

Appointed interim Lyon-Depute 24th April 1819. Mr. Tait was 
called to the Scottish Bar in 1807, and filled the office of Sheriff- 
Substitute of Mid-Lothian from 1820 to 1848, when he resigned. 

9. GEORGE CLERK CRAIGIE of Dumbarnie, Co. Perth, Advocate. 

Appointed 1st April 1823. Born 1788. Called to the Scottish 
Bar 1810. Died 1845. 

10. JAMES TYTLER of Woodhouselee, Co. Edinburgh, Writer to 

the Signet (1803). 

Appointed Joint Depute with Mr. Craigie 2cl June 1827. Sole 
Depute from 1845. Second sou of Alexander Fraser-Tytler of Wood- 

1 See page 487, note 2. 


houselee and Belnain, one of the Senators of the College of Justice, and 
brother of Patrick Fraser-Tytler, the historian of Scotland. Born 1780. 
Died 10th October 1862. 

1 1. GEORGE BURNETT, Advocate, of the family of Kemnay, Aber- 


Appointed 9th February 1863. Born 1822. Called to the Scottish 
Bar in 1845. 

NO. nr. 


Lyon King of Arms, dated 8th November 1620, in the 
collection of ancient papers at Dalmahoy. 

OUR SOUERANE LORD Ordanes ane Lettre to be maid vnder his hienes 
grit scale in dew forme, Makand mentioun That his hienes excellent 
Maiestie Haueing gude prwfe and experience of the Literature, gude 
Lettres, abundance of Langwages, ingenious maneris, qualificatiouu 
and abilitie of his hienes Louit Maister Jerome Lindesay of Annatland, 
for exerceing the office of his maist excellent Maiesties Lyoun King of 
Arnies ; and vnderstanding that the said office is now Vaikand in his 
Maiesties handis and at his hienes gift and dispositioun, Be demissioun 
of the sameu maid in his hienes handis be Sir Dauid Lindesay of 
the Mount, Knicht, his Maiesties present Lyoun King of Armes, In 
fauouris of the said Mr. Jerome ; Thairfore our said Souerane Lord 
with advyse and consent of the Lordis of his hienes Secreit Counsell 
of his Maiesties Kingdome of Scotland, his hienes Commissioneris, 
Hes nominat and presentit, and be the tenour heirof nominatis and 
presentis, the said Mr. Jerome Lindesay to the said office, And makis 
and constituitis him King of his maist excellent Maiesties Armes, 
Giveand, grantand, and disponand to him the said office to be bruikit, 
vsit, and possessit be him during all the dayes of his Lyftyme, with the 
honor titill and dignitie of ane Knicht ; Ordaining him in altyme 
aiming during his Lyftyme to be callit, writtin, and intitulat Sir 
Jereme Lhidesay of Annatland, Knicht, Lyoun King of his hienes 
Armes, Giveand and assigneand to him the sowme of Fourtie punds 


vsuall money of this realme, to be zeirlie tane and vpliftit furth of the 
racliest fermes and dewties of the landis of Rathulet, with the perti- 
nentis, Lyaud within the Schirefdome of Fyiff, with all vther fies, 
casualties, and dewties belonging to the said office : To be bruikit and 
possessit be him zeirlie during his lyftyme, With powar to the said Mr. 
Jereme to vse and exerce, occupy, braik, and possis the said place and 
office, with all honouris, stipeinds, commodities, privelidgis, and dewties 
belonging to the said office, and to convene before him and his brether- 
ing herauldis All and Sindrie members of the samen office and inferiour 
officeris at all tymes necessaris, and to try the qualificatiounis, fidelitie, 
honestie, and diligence, and to admit thame of new to thair offices as 
thaj sail find meit, or to depryve thame of the samen, according to his 
discretioun ; And to mak statutes and constitutiounis for observeing of 
the saraen honorable office of Armes in the puritie and right ordour, 
And to imput panis vpouu the resisteris, contraveineris thairof and the 
samen panis to vplift and apply to his awin proper vse, And to reduce 
and repledge all and sindrie herauldis, maisseris, messingeris, and 
armour beareris arreistit, citat, or callit in law before quhatsumeuer 
Judges criminall, civile, or spiritual to the priveledges of his office and 
to the judgement of him and his brethering heraudis Cautioun de 
Collerauch (i.e., surety to Court) to offer and find for administratioun of 
Justice within terme of Law to all pairties persewaris, and with all 
and sindrie vtheris Liberties, commodities, profites, and easementes, and 
righteous pertinentis quhatsumeuer perteining or that righteouslie may 
be knawin to perteine to the said office, frielie, quyetlie, fullie, honor- 
ablie, weill and in peace, Siclyk and in the samen mauer in all respectis 
as the said Sir Dauid Lindesay or ony of his predecessouris, Lyounis 
Kings of Armes, brukit the said office before, But (i.e., without) ony 
Reuocatioun, obstacle, impediment, or aganecalling quhatsurneuir. Gevin 
at Newmarkat the aucht day of November 1620 yeiris. Sic Subscri- 
bitur, Al. Cancel 8 - Mar Thes ms - Melros. George Hay. J. Murray 

2. PATENT of the Office of Lord Lyon King of Arms in favour of 

RoBERT-AuRiOL, ninth Earl of Kinnoull, with remainder to 

his son THOMAS- ROBERT, Viscount Dupplin (afterwards 

tenth Earl of Kinnoull), dated 26th May 1796. 

Gtorgius, Dei gratia, Magnae Brittanite Franciae et Hiberniae Rex, Fidei 


Defensor, Omnibus probis liominibus ad quos presentes Literse nostra! 
pervenerint, salutem : Quandoquidem nos considerantes qualificationes et 
animi dotes fidelissimi et dilectissimi nostri consanguine! et Consiliarii 
Roberti Auriol Drummond Hay Comitis de Kinnoull Vicecomitis 
Dupplin et Domini Hay de Kiufauns in Scotia et Baronis Hay de 
Pedwarden in Anglia, et Thoinse Roberti Hay vulgo nuncupati Vice- 
comitis Dupplin, filii ejus natu maximi, ad fungendum et exequendum 
officium nostri Domini Leonis Fecialis Regis Armorum pro ilia parte 
Regni nostri uniti Scotia vocata, nunc vacans et ad nostram Donationem 
existens, per decessum Joannis Campbell et Alexander Campbell Armi- 
gerorum, quibus idem officium ultimo concessum erat ; Igitur Sciatis nos, 
ex gratiosa voluntate nostra, Fecisse, Nominasse, et Ordinasse memoratos 
Robertum Auriol Drummond Hay Comitem de Kinnoull, et Thomain 
Robertum Hay vulgo mmcupaturn Vicecomitem Dupplin, durantibus 
omnibus eorum vitse diebus et diebus vitae eorum superviventis, Domiuum 
Leonem Nostrum Fecialem Regem Armorum, una cum Stilo et Titulo ad 
dictum officium spectantibus et cum eodem in ilia parte Regni nostri 
uniti Scotia vocata usualiter habitiset potitis : Ac etiam nos pro nobis et 
nostris Regiis successoribus Damus et Concedimus dicto Roberto Auriol 
Drummond Hay Comiti De Kinnoull et Thomse Roberto Hay vulgo 
nuncupate Vicecomiti Dupplin, durantibus omnibus eorum vitse diebus 
durantibusque vita? diebus eorum superviventis, secundum respectivos 
eorum interesse in dicto officio, nostram plenariam potestatem, libertatem, 
licentiam et auctoritatem Insignia Armoria personis virtute prasditis et de 
nobis bene merentibus, juxta ordines et constitutiones eatenus prsescriptas, 
Dandi et Concedendi, una cum omnibus foedis, juribus, libertatibus, 
privilegiis et emoluments ad dictum officium spectantibus et cum 
eodem usualiter habitis et potitis, vel quse quovis tempore prasterito ad 
idem pertinuerunt aut quse ullo modo ad dictum officium a die mortis 
Joannis Campbell Armigeri qui ejusdem ultimo potitus fuit pertinuerint, 
spectaverint, vel accreverint : Tenendum et Habendum dictum officium 
Nostri Domini Leonis Regis Armorum, a die mortis dicti Joannis 
Campbell qui ejusdem ultimo potitus fuit, per dictum Robertum Auriol 
Drummond Hay Comitem de Kinnoull durantibus omnibus ejus vitse die- 
bus, cum Stilo et Titulo et Salario et omnibus fcedis, juribus, libertatibus, 
privilegiis et emolumentis ad idem spectantibus et cum eodem usualiter 
habitis et potitis, vel quse quovis tempore prseterito ad dictum officium 
pertinuerunt, aut quse ullo modo ad dictum officium a die mortis dicti 


Joannis Campbell qui ejusdem ultimo potitus fuit pertinuerint, specta- 
verint vel accreverint, et a et post decessura dicti Roberti Auriol Drum- 
moud Hay Coraitis de Kinnoull, vel resignationem ejus dicti Officii 
vel aliam sui iuteresse in eodem determinationem, tune Tenendura et 
Habendum dictum officium Domini nostri Leonis Regis Armorum per 
dictum Thomam Robertum Hay vtilgo nuncupatum Vicecomitem Dupplin 
durantibus omnibus ejus vitse diebus, cum Stilo, Titulo et Salario et omni- 
bus foedis, juvibus, libertatibus, privilegiis et emolumentis ad dictum 
officium spectantibus, et cum eodem usualiter habitis et potitis, vel quae 
quovis tempore prseterito ad idem pertinuerunt. Prseterea Nos, ex Regia 
nostra benignitate et favore, Damns et Concedimus dicto Roberto Auriol 
Drummond Hay Comiti de Kinnoull et Thomse Roberto Hay vulgo 
nuncupate Vicecomiti Dupplin, Salarium Sex Centum librarum Sterlinen- 
sium per annum a die mortis dicti Joannis Campbell qui ejusdem 
officii ultimo potitus fuit incipere, et per diem illis et eorum superstiti 
durantibus omnibus eorum vitae diebus et vita? diebus eorum superstitis 
quamdiu dictum officium habuerint et ejusdem potiti fuerint secundum 
in eodem eorum respectivos interesse solvendum et solubile ut supra, 
ex ulla nostrorum redituum parte in Scotia existentium ad usus civiles 
istius partis regni nostri uniti applicabilium apud eosdem terminos et 
similiter quasi alia Salaria in Stabilimento pro rebus civilibus in Scotia 
usualiter solvuutur. In cujus rei Testinionium, sigillum nostrum per Uni- 
onis tractatum custodieudum et in Scotia vice et loco magni Sigilli ejusdem 
utendum ordinatum prsesentibus appendi mandavimus, apud Aulam nos- 
tram apud St. James's, Vigesimo sexto die inensis Maii millesimo septin- 
gentesimo nonagesimo sexto Regnique Nostri anno trigesimo sexto. 

No. IV. 


1. 1592, c. 125 ; fol. edit. c. 29 (Jac. vi.) 

CONCERNING the Office of Lyouu Kiug-of-Armes and his brether 


OURE SOUERANE LORD and Estaitis of this present parliament, Con- 
siddering the greit abuse that hes bene amongis the leigis of this realme 


in thair bearing of arrnes, vsurpand to tliame selffis sic armes as belangis 
nocht vnto thame, sua that it can nocht be distinguischit be thair armes 
quha ar gentlemen of blude be thair antecessouris, Nor zit may it be 
decernit quhat gentlemen ar discendit of noble stok and linage, ffor 
remeid quhairof his hienes, with aduise of the saidis estaitis, hes geuin 
and grantit, and be this present act gevis and grantis full power and 
commissioun, to lyouu king-of-armes and his brother herauldis, To visite 
the haill armes of noblemen, baronis, and gentlemen borne and vsit 
within this realme, and to distinguische and discerne thame with con- 
gruent differences, and thairefter to matriculat tham in thair buikis and 
Regtsteris, And to put inhibitioun to all the commoun sort of people 
nocht worthie be the law of armes to beir ony signes armoriallis, That 
nane of thame presume or tak vpoun hand to beare or vse ony armes, 
in tyme cuming, vpoun ony thair insicht or houshald geir, vnder the 
pane of the escheating of the guidis and geir, sa oft as thay salbe fund 
contravenand this present act, quhaireuir the same armes salbe found 
grawin and paintit, to our souerane lordis vse ; And lykwayis vnder the 
pane of ane hundreth pundis to the vse of the said lyoun and his brether 
herauldis. And failzeing of payment thairof, That thay be incarcerat 
in the narrest prissone, Thairin to remane, vpoun thair awin chargis, 
during the plesour of the said Lyoun. 

Item, Because charges of treason hes not bene execute and used, with 
sik solemnity and Officiares of Armes, as the weichtiness thereof re- 
quires : It is statute and ordained that Our Soveraine Lordis Thesaurer, 
and utheris directors of sik letters, deliver them in time cumuiing, to be 
execut be the ordinar Herauldes and Pursevantes, bearand coattes of 
armes, or Masers, to be used be thame, as of before ; and gif ony exe- 
cution, under the paine of treason sail be execute utherwaies, declaris 
the execution to be null, and of nane availe. 

Item, In consideration of the great abtise of Messengers and of Offi- 
ciares of Armes within this Realme, quhilkis for the inaist part ar not 
qualified for using of the said office, being admitted be extraordinar and 
importune suites, be quhais abuse the Liegis of this Realme ar heavily 
troubled and oppressed : Therefore it is statute and ordained, that the 
said King of Armes, be advise of the Lordis of Councell and Session, 
deprive and discharge all sik Officiares and Messengres of Armes, as he 
sail finde unworthy of the office, And take sicker soverty of the rema- 
nent, for observation of their Injunctiones in time cumming : With 


power to the said King of Armes, with advise of the saids Lords, to 
enjoyne further necessar injunctiones to the saids messengers, for keeping 
of gude ordour in their offices : discharging him in the mean-time to 
admit ony maa officiares hereafter, quhil the haill messengers, presently 
bearing armes, be reduced be death or deprivation, to the number con- 
teined in the Acte of Parliament, maid anent the confused number of 
officiares of armes. 

Item,, Because the jurisdiction of the Lyon King-of- Armes is not able 
to execute dew punishment upon all persones that sail happen to offend 
in the office of Armes : Therefore our Soveraine Lord, with advise of 
his three Estaites in Parliament, ordainis and corninandis all civil Ma- 
gistrats, as they sail be required be the King of Armes, or ony uthers 
in his name, to concur with him, to see the acts maid in his favours of 
his office put to dew execution in their jurisdictions : As alswa to concur 
with him, to the punishment and incarceration of all sik persons as sail 
usurp the bearing of his Majestie's Armes, after dew deprivation, under 
the pain of rebellion, and putting of the disobeyers to his Hienesse 
home ; with certification to them, and they failzie, being required, letters 
sail be direct simpliciter to put them to the home. 

2.1662, c. 53 (Car. IT.) 

ACT in favours of the LORD LYON KING-AT-ABMES. 

FORASMUCH as King James the Sext of blessed memorie and his 
Estates of Parliament, Considering the great abuses have been commited 
in the beareing of Armes, Many vsurpeing to themselffs such armes as 
belongs not to them, So as it cannot be distinguished who are Gentlemen 
of blood, or descendit of noble lineadge, Thairfor did, te the 125 Act 
of Parliament, holden in Junii 1592, Give Commission to the Lyon 
King-at-Armes To visite the haill armes of Noblemen, Barrones, and 
Gentlemen, And to distinguish them with congruent differences, Which 
wer therafter to be insert in their books and registers ; And that none 
of his Maiesties subjects, save such as be the law of Armes are allowed, 
Should presume to bear or vse any armes, in tyme comeing, vpon any 
of thair goods, vnder the paine of esheat of thair goods on which these 
armes are caried, And one hundreth pund Scots to the Lyon : Lykeas, 
his Maiesties Royale father of happie memorie, Considering how much 
the honour and credite of the Nobility and Gentrie of this Kingdome 


consisted in preserveing the noble office of Armes in carefull registrating 
of the Geneologies, to be patent to all posterity, or whom els it may 
concerne, And to that effect, vnderstanding that the casualties, fies, and 
dewties vnderwritteu, Doth in all reason, law, and equity belong to the 
Lyon King-of-Armes, be vertew of his office, viz., at the funeralls and 
interments of each Duke, Dutches, or Dukes relict, Sex hundreth pund 
Scots ; each Marques, Marchiones, or Marques relict, Four hundreth 
and fourscore punds ; every Archbishop, Four hundreth punds ; everie 
Earle or Countes, or Earles relict, Three hundreth and threescore punds ; 
everie Viscount or Viscountesse, or Viscounts relict, Three hundreth and 
fourty punds each Bishop, Three hundreth and fourty punds ; each 
Lord of Parliament whatsumever, thair Ladies or relicts, Three hundreth 
punds : Which casualties and dewties abovewritten are to be paid, in 
all tyme comeiug, by the saids Noblemen and Ladies, thair airs and 
executors, imediatly after the decease or funeralls of the defuncts, ffor 
entering in his booke the Certificats of thair matches and issues, with 
the propper Armes perteaneing to their familie, to remaine therin ad 
futuram rei memoriam, Did, be his letters-patent vnder the privy Scale 
of tuenty-sevent of Junij 1633, Confirme the then Lord Lyon and his 
successors in the saids fies, dueties, and casualities, With power to him 
to vplift the saids fies, and vse all execution for the same, As in the 
said Gift is more amplie exprest ; And his Maiestie now considering 
how much the honor and interest of the Kingdome is concerned in the 
due exercise of the Office of the Lyon, and in the right disposall and 
carieing of Armes, Doth therfor, with advice and consent of his estates 
of Parliament, Renew, Ratifie, and Approve the Act of Parliament 
above mentioned and gift vnder his Majesties privy Seall, and all other 
gifts and grants formerly granted and given in favours of the Lyon 
King-of-Armes and his successors, And ordaines them to be punc- 
tually observed and put in execution, Conform to the tenor thairof, 
in all tyme comeing ; And furder, considering what disorders and 
confusions have arisen, and are dayly occasioned by the Vsurpation 
of Cadents, who, against all rules, assume to themselffs the armes 
of the cheeff house of the familie out of which they are descendit, 
And that other mean persones who can nowayes deryve thair suc- 
cession from the families whose names they bear, As they have at 
first assumed the name, Doe therafter weare the coat of that name to 
which they pretend without any warrand or grund whatsumever, Doth 


with advice foresaid Statute aud Ordean that no younger brother or 
cadent of any familie presume to carie the armes of that familie, bot 
with such distinctions as shall be given be the Lyon King-of-Armes ; 
And that no man carie the Arines of any noble familie of his name, 
Except he make it appear to the Lyon (who is heirby declared to be 
the only Judge competent in such caces and debates) that he is 
descendit of that family ; And for right ordering all these confusions 
which have creept in in these latter tymes in the carieing of Armes, It 
is heirby ordained, That all Noblemen aud Gentlemen shall have thair 
armes examined and renewed be the Lord .Lyon and insert in his 
registers, and receave ane extract vnder his hand to be preserved be 
them, And that all such who, according to the addition of their honours, 
are to receave additions to their coats of Armes, That they receave the 
same from the Lyon, And whoever shall offer to assume any addition 
without his approbation, They are to be punished according to the Acts 
of Parliament made against the bearers of false armes : And that no 
Painters, Maisons, Goldsmiths, Wrights, Gravers or any other of that 
nature, take vpou them to grave, cut, paint, or carve any armes whatso- 
ever, Bot such as are approven be the Lyon King-of-armes ; And remits 
to the Lords of his Maiesties privy Councill the further prosecution of 
this Act and the makeing of it effectual!, With power to them to make 
and set doun such acts and orders theranent and for modifieiEg of 
fies, wher the sarnen are not modified alreadie, and doeing every other 
thing which they shall think fit for the establishing of the Lyons Office 
and the right ordering of armes within this Kingdoine ; Which acts and 
ordinances to be made be his Maiesties privy Councill, in pursueauce 
of this present warrand, Shall be accompted, and are to have als much 
streiith as any Act of this or any other Parliament : And for the better 
mantaineing of the forsaid Office, his Maiestie and Estates of Parlia- 
ment hes exeemed, And be thir presents exeenies the said Lyon King of 
Armes and his successors, their persons, lands, and moveables fra all 
taxations, stents, watching:?, wardings, impositions reall or personall, 
for any cause or occasion whatsumever ; Dischargeing heirby all and 
sindrie his Maiesties Hedges to trouble or molest him or them by the 
exaction of any such imposition above mentioned, Bot to be frie from 
this present and in all tyine comeing : And it is heirby declared, That 
the generall conception of this exemption shall nowayes derogat from the 
strenth and validitie thairof, Bot that, notwithstanding of the generality, 

2 I 


they shall enjoy the benefite of it as fully, auiplie, and validlie, As if all 
the saids taxations and others imposed, or to be imposed, wer particu- 
larly therin specified. 

3. 1663, c. 15 (Car. 11.) 

ACT rescinding a former Act past in the last Session of Parlia- 
ment, anent some fies acclamed as due to the Lord Lyon's 

THE Estates of Parliament, haveing taken to consideration ane Act 
past in the Second session of Parliament, entituled Act in favours of 
the Lord Lyon, Doe find ane vimecessar and heavy burding therby 
layd vpon his Maiesties leidges, both in the sumes therby appointed to 
be payd to the Lord Lyon, and in many other particulars mentioned in 
the said Act, And therfor his Maiestie, with advice and consent of his 
Estates of Parliament, Doth heirby Rescind and annull the said Act past 
in the second session of Parliament, entituled Act in favours of the 
Lord Lyon, and als the pretendit Gift mentioned therin, pretendit to be 
granted be his late Maiestie of blessed memorie to the former Lord 
Lyons bot never past the Sealls, And declares the said Act and Gift 
therinmentioned voyd and null ttb initio, as if they had never been. 

4. 1672, c. 21 ; fol. edit,, c. 47 (Car. IT.) 

ACT concerning the Priviledges of the Office of Lyon Kiug-at- 

OUR SOVERAIGNE LORD Considering that, albeit by the 1 25 Act of 
the 12 Parliament, holdin by his Maiesties grandfather in the yeir 
1592, the usurpation of Armes by any of his Maiesties leidges without 
the authority of the Lyon King-of-Armes is expresly discharged ; And 
that, in order therto, Power and Commission is granted to the Lyon 
King-of-Armes, or his Deputes, to visite the whole Armes of Noblemen, 
Barrens, and Gentlemen, and to matriculate the same in their Registers, 
and to fine in One Hundreth pounds all others who shall unjustlie usurp 
Armes ; As also to Escheit all such goods and geir as shall have unwar- 
rantable Armes ingraven on -them : Yet, amongst the many irregularities 
of these late times, very many have assumed to themselvis Armes, who 
should bear none, and many of these who may in law bear, have assumed 
to themselvis the Armes of their cheiff, without distinctions, or Armes 


which were not caried by them or their predicessors : Therfore His 
Maiestie, with advice and consent of his Estates of Parliament, Ratifies 
and Approves the forsaid Act of Parliament ; And for the more vigorous 
prosecution therof, Doth hereby statute and ordain that lettirs of publi- 
cation of this present Act be direct to be execute at the mercat cross 
of the heid Burghs of the Shires, Stewartries, Bailliaries of Royaltie 
and Regallitie, and Royal 1 Burroughs, chargeing all and sundry Prelates, 
Noblemen, Barons, and Gentlemen, who make vse of any Armes or 
Signes armoriall, within the space of one yeir aftir the said publication, 
to bring or send ane account of what Armes or Signes armoriall they 
are accustomed to vse ; and whither they be descendants of any familie 
the Armes of which familie they bear, and of what Brother of the 
ffamilie they are descended ; With Testificats from persones of Honour, 
Noblemen, or Gentlemen of qualitie, anent the verity of their having 
and vseing those Armes, and of their descent as afoirsaid, to be deli- 
vered either to the Clerk of the Jurisdiction where the persones duells, 
or to the Lyon Clerk at his office in Edinburgh, at the option of the 
party, vpon their receipts gratis without paying anything therfore ; 
Which Receipt shall be a sufficient exoneration to them from being 
obleidged to produce again, to the effect that the Lyon King-of-Armes 
may distinguish the saids Armes with congruent differences, and may 
matriculat the same in his Bookes and Registers, and may give Armes 
to vertuous and well-deserving Persones, and Extracts of all Armes, ex- 
pressing the blasoning of the Arms, vndir his hand and seall of office ; 
For which shall be payed to the Lyon the sourne of Tuentie inerkes by 
every Prelat and Nobleman, and Ten merks be every Knight and Baron, 
and Five merkes by every other persone bearing Armes, and noe more : 
And his Maiestie hereby Dispensses with any penalties that may arise 
be this or any preceiding Act for bearing Armes befor the Proclamation 
to be issued herevpon : And it is Statute and Ordained, with consent 
forsaid, that the said Register shall be respected as the true and unre- 
peallable rule of all Armes and Bearings in Scotland, to remain with the 
Lyons office as a publict Register of the Kingdome, and to be trans- 
mitted to his Successors in all tytne comeing : And that whosoevir 
shall vse any other Armes any manner of way aftir the expireing of 
year and day from the date of the Proclamation to be issued hereupon, 
in inaner forsaid, shall pay One Hundred pounds money toties quoties 
to the Lyon, and shall likewayes escheat to his Maiestie all the move- 


able Goods and Geir vpou which the saids Armes are engraven or 
otherwise represented : And bis Maiestie, with consent forsaid, De- 
claires that it is onlie allowed for Noblemen and Bishopes to subscrive 
by their titles ; and that all others shall subscrive their Christned 
names, or the initiall letter therof with there, and may, if they 
please, adject the designations of their lands, prefixing the word " Of" 
to the saids designations : And the Lyon King- at- Armes and his Breth- 
ren are required to be carefull of informeing themselvis of the contra- 
veiners heirof, and that they acquaint his Maiesties Councill therwith, 
who are hereby impowered to punish them as persones disobedient to, 
and contraveiuers of the Law : It is likewise hereby Declaired that the 
Lyon and his Brethren Heraulds are judges in all such causes concern- 
ing the Malversation of Messingers in their office, and are to enjoy all 
other priviledges belonging to their office, which are secured to them 
by the lawes of this kingdome, and according to former practice. 

No. V. 


1. Heraldic Register of Sir David Lindsay of the Mount, Lyon 
Kiug-at-Arms, 1530-55, folio (31. 4. 3.), published in facsimile by 
Mr. Laing of the Signet Library (supra, pp. 42, 69). 

2. "XI Octob. 1586. Collectanea Domini Davidis Lindesay De 
Motmthe, Militis, Leonis Armorum Regis" (nephew of the compiler of 
the preceding MS.) The title is in the handwriting of Sir James Bal- 
four. A folio of 129 leaves (of which 37 are blank), in a hand of the 
sixteenth century. On folio 61 is a subscription which may be that of 
Lindsay. The volume contains, inter alia : 

An award of the Constable of France regarding the precedency of 
Heralds and Sergeants at Arms, 1447. 

The duties of Heralds, and a Treatise for their instruction on the 
subject of Coat Armour. 

" Liber Armorum. How gentlemen salbe knauin from churles of 
knighthood and gentlemen of coats of arms and their blazoning." 
(31. 3. 20.) 


3. Transcript of the greater portion of the preceding small folio, 
in hand of the sixteenth century. Inscribed " Scrimzeour on Herauldiy," 
and said in a note to have been written by " Mr. Jhon Scrymgeour of 
Myris, Maister of Warke to the King's Majestic." This copy belonged 
to Sir James Balfour. (31. 5. 2.) 

4. Illuminated Arms by J. Sawers, Herald Painter in the reign of 
Charles i., 248 leaves folio. Containing the Bearings of the Scottish 
Nobility, rudely coloured, with a transcript (at the end) of Thomas 
Crawford's list of Scottish arms. In several instances the field of the 
escutcheons is diapered. Inscribed " Joseph Stacie, Ross Herald, his 
Book cost me an hundreth pounds from John Saures wyff, 1G54, 
and 20 po. more. I was created Herauld Sepf 1663, yet living." 
(31. 4. 4.) 1 

5. Coats of arms of Sovereigns. Nobles, and Gentlemen of Scotland, 
partly taken from Sir David Lindsay's MS. A collection of the early 
part of the reign of James VL, rudely coloured, but of considerable 
value. Quarto. The Kings and Queens are represented in projnid 
persond with their arms blazoned on their robes. The bearings of the 
Nobility are accompanied by all the exterior ornaments, while, in the 
case of the Gentlemen, the shield is merely surmounted by a helmet 
and mantling. All the helmets have a quaint antique appearance. 
(31. 4. 2.) 

6. Collection of illuminated Arms by Ethrington Martyn, P.H. 
(Pictor Heraldicus), 1794. Two volumes 4to, with an Index at the 
end of each. The illuminations are occasionally accompanied by criti- 
cal observations, and in most cases are well executed. It appears from 
a note in vol. i. that most of the arms were collected from Seals, Draw- 

1 The following letter to Stacie contrary wich you thought a mis- 

from Sir James Balfonr, Lyon King- take. Zet since yat Blason (wich 

of-Arms, is pasted on one of the I weill know) will not abyde y e 

boards of another folio MS. in the prouffe of forraine Heraulds I ain 

Advocates' Library (31. 4. 6.) : weill pleased it be so blasoned as I 

" Kynd Josephe, I receaued yours of have wrettin to you, and yat the 

y fr 28 of Maij y e 5 of Junij By wich Heighlanclers keepe ther errors in 

I pearceaue ye progresse in ye Earle Herauldrey at home in ther auen 

of Lewin's bussiness. Y mistake is Shells (Shields ?). Soe desyring you 

easily helped. . . . Blazon it argent, to make ane end of it, I will ever 

ane eagle displayed vert, langued and reinane, your faithful frind, S r JA. 

armed gules, altho' they beare it BALFOURE. Denmyle, 9 June 1656." 


ings, Paintings, and MSS., and are not to be found in any publication. 
On the title page of vol. ii. it is stated that it contains ' many scarce 
and uncommon Names." (31. 4. 1.) 

7. "Account of the Office of a Herauld," small 4to. In a hand of 
the sixteenth century. Contains treatises on the laws and usages of 
Anns in Tournaments, etc. Formerly in the possession of Sir James 
Balfour, Lyon King, and at an earlier period the property of Peter 
Thomsoune, Hay Herald. (31. 7. 20.) 

8. Quarto volume, partly vellum and partly paper, bound in green 
velvet, containing, inter alia, " Pointes of worship in Armes," the Oath 
of Heralds, etc. A portion of the MS. is supposed to be as old as the 
thirteenth century. (32. 6. 9.) 

9. "Account of the Office of Heraulds," 88 pp. folio. Containing 
numerous particulars regarding the ceremonies, styles, fees, etc., of 
Scottish and English Heralds, and apparently a transcript of another 
folio of 125 pp., in the hand of the seventeenth century, marked 
31. 3. 18. (34. 3. 22.) 

10. Certificate by the (13) Officers of the English College of Heralds, 
including Sir William Segar as " Garter," testifying that " James Bal- 
four, Esquire, by and attour his insicht and knowledge in diverse lan- 
guages, hes also singular good knowledge and experience in all antiquities 
and forraine histories, but especiall in these concerning the ilands of 
Great Britaine and Irland ;" and also declaring " him to be ane expert 
and graduate herauld in blazing of cotts and armours, in searching of 
genealogies and descents, in mareschalling of funeralls, triumphs, and 
inaugurations, etc., and in all ceremonies whatsumever perteining to 
honour or armes." Each Herald signs under an illuminated shield 
bearing his own arms, the date being 4th December 1628. 12mo, in 
vellum binding. (13. 2. 6.) 

11. " Genealogical and Heraldic Collections," 12mo. Scottish Sur- 
names, with genealogies and arms, in alphabetical order, written about 
the time of James n. (13. 2. 10.) 

12. Case titled " Ancient Rolls." Five parchment Rolls, of which 
one (No. 2) is a Roll of Arms neatly drawn in ink on heater shields 
(three in each row), the tinctures being indicated by initial letters. 
The names of the bearers are in the handwriting of Sir James Balfour, 
who has prefixed the following title : " The Cotts of 267 Knights 
and Landed Gentlemen of the Kingdom of Scotland, as. they were pre- 


to our soveraue Lady Marie, by the grace of God Queen of 
Scotland and Dowager of France, by Sir Robert Forman, Lyone King 
of Annes." No. 3 is a Roll, in Sir James Balfour's handwriting, of 
the Nobility of Scotland, " according to their precedency in this zeir of 
God 1633." (34. 4. 16.) 

13. Crests, Mottos, and Supporters of the Scottish Nobility, 1631. 
In the handwriting of Sir James Balfour. Thiu folio. (33. 2. 35.) 

14. Folio Volume of Heraldic Shields, printed blank (9 on each 
page), a few of which are filled up with Scottish Coats of Arms by 
Sir James Balfour, the tinctures being indicated by initial letters. 
(33. 2. 27.) 

15. " Coates of Armes of the Kings and Noble Families," by Sir 
James Balfour. Large folio, containing 548 illuminated shields, the 
bearings of the Sovereigns and Nobility of Scotland being at the end of 
the volume. (15. 1. 10.) 

16. List of Scottish Surnames and Arms, in alphabetical order 
narrow folio in the handwriting of Sir J^unes Balfour. (15. 1. 11.) 

17. Rudely-coloured Coats-armoiial of Scottish Kings, Nobles, and 
Gentlemen, by Workman (Herald in the reign of James vi.), whose 
numerous errors are noted by Sir James Balfour Folio. (31. 3. 5.) 

18. Register of the Ceremonials at the Funerals of the Marquis of 
Hamilton, Lord Bucclench, Earl of Kinnoull, Countess of Wigton, and 
Countess of Nithsdale, between 1625 and 1637. Thin folio, in the 
handwriting of Sir James Balfour. (33. 2. 11.) 

19. Vellum quarto, in the hand of the loth or beginning of the 
1 6th century, formerly in the possession of Sir James Balfour, who has 
inscribed its contents (which are in Latin) on the first leaf, viz. : 

1. Bartolus de Saxo ferrato de signis et araiis. 

2. Nicolaus Uptone, Canonicus Sarura Pe militia et nobilitate 

De Nobilitate colorum in armis depictorum, etc., the latter 
treatises being illustrated by coloured shields of arms. 
(31. 6. 5.) - 

20. " Collection of the most remarkable Accounts that relate to the 
Families of Scotland, etc. ; by Sir George Mackenzie of Rosehaugh, 
His Majestic' s Advocat." 481 pp. Svo., in the handwriting of Robert 
Mylne. (34. 6. 8.) 

21. Notices of the Families of Scotland, in alphabetical order, 
" drawn from their own charters, and other authentic writs." Stated 


in a note to be a copy by Sir George Mackenzie from Lord Carse's 
Collection ; with additions by Mackenzie. (34. 3. 19.) 

22. Collection of Patents and Birth-brieves in Latin (diplomata et 
literse prosapise), from the time of James vi. to the reign of Wil- 
liam in. Small quarto. (34. 6. 3.) 

23. Genealogical and other collections, in the handwriting of Robert 
Mylne, including notes of charters, history of the family of Drummond, 
and " Ane Alphabetical Index of some of the Collections of Master Nisbet, 
Teacher of Herauldrie." Quarto. (34. 6. 9.) 

24. " A Treaty of Surnames in general, but especially these of 
Scotland," by Sir James Balfour, Lyon King of Arms, 70 pp. folio. 
(33. 2. 28.) 

25. " General Collections" concerning families in Scotland, from MS. 
Accounts, Writs, etc., 1750-51. Two large folio volumes, with the 
Arms and Initials of Walter Macfarlane stamped on the back of each. 
(35. 4. 8.) 

26. "Crawford MSS. Basonage." Numerous notices of Scottish 
families and churchmen, 399 pp. folio. (34. 3. 9.) 

[Besides the above, there are several other MSS. in the handwriting 
of Sir James Balfour relative to Coronations, Royal Christenings, etc.] 


1. Small 4to volume containing 278 leaves, titled outside, " Old 
Manuscript of Blazons," and inside, " Workman's MS." The first 52 
pages are occupied by a verbal blazon of the Arms of Foreign Poten- 
tates, Kings of Scotland, Knights, etc., followed by a series of rudely 
illuminated Arms, somewhat in the style of Sir David Lindsay's Re- 
gister. The following note appears on page 1 : " The Blazons in ane 
old Illuminat Book belonging to Henry Frazer, Ross Herald and Painter, 
which formerly belonged to Joseph Stacie, 1654, and James Workman, 
1623. This Book has been ane authentick Record in the reigns of 
Queen Mary and King James the Sixth." 

2. 12mo volume, titled " Pont's Manuscript," inscribed " W. Smiton, 
Painter, 1780," at whose sale it was purchased by the Lord Lyon 
(Lord Kinnoull) in 1809. Probably a transcript, the handwriting 
bearing a resemblance to that of Robert Mylne. Its contents are as 
follows : 


1st, 29 pp. of coloured Shields (12 on each page), " being the 
arms of severall gentlemen, according to Sir James Balfour, 
Lo. Lyon." 
2d, James Font's Collection of the Blazons of the Nobility and 

Surnames in Scotland, 1624. 1 
3d, Tabular pedigrees of the Scottish Nobility, by Robert Por- 

teous, Herald Painter, 1661. (See p. 509, infra.) 
4th, Tabular pedigrees of Scottish Gentlemen. 
5th, A Book of Itetours. 

3. Arms of the Nobility and Gentry of Scotland (Nobiles majores et 
minores), the former in the order of precedency, and the latter alpha- 
betically arranged, 1 2mo, supposed to be in the handwriting of William 
Hamilton of Wishaw, ancestor of Lord Belhaven (end of 17th century). 
4 " Armorial Bearings of the Nobility and Landed Gentlemen of 
Scotland, by Sir Patrick Hume of Polwort, Barronet," 12mo. The 
date on the last written leaf is 1723. 

5. Transcript from an original Heraldic MS. of Mr. Thomas Craw- 
furd, Professor of Mathematics, Edinburgh, who died aboiit 1660, 
49 pp. 12mo. 

6. Rude illuminations, titled "Kings' and Nobilitys' Arms," small 

7. Small 12mo, described on the fly-leaf as " A Book of Heraldry," 

1st, Coloured Shields (engravings). 

2d, " List of all the Gentlemen's Arms as they are matriculated 
in the Lyon Herald's Register Books of Scotland, keeped at 
the Lyon Office in Edinburgh preceding 1688 the Revolu- 
tion year'' (in alphabetical order). 

8. Transcript of Collection of Genealogies by Sir George Mackenzie, 

9. Birth-Brieves of the Scottish Nobility (temp. Car. n.), with their 
arms illuminated, folio. 

10. About half-a-dozen small folio volumes of Birth-Brieves (not 
authenticated), recovered from the private repository of a former officer 
of the Lyon Court in 1842. 

1 The " exactest copy" of this MS. Seton, where Pont appears to have 
was seen b}- Xishet in the House of died. System of Heraldry, i. 258. 



1. List of the Nobility of Scotland, with their Arms (Lansd. MS. 
865, f. 46.), small folio, very much blotted. 

2. Arms of the Nobility of Scotland, A.D. 1602 (Harl. MSS. 1482, 
f. 1.), folio. The first part is handsomely blazoned, while the latter 
portion consists of pen-and-ink drawings of arms. 

3. Arms and Pedigrees of Scottish Nobility, 1606 (Harl. MSS. 1423), 
folio. Containing numerous sketches of arms and several pedigrees, 
all in good condition. 

4. Font's Collections of the names and arms of the second degree of 
gentry in Scotland (Sloane MS. 490), 12 mo, very neatly arranged and 
well written. 

5. Arms of the Nobility of Scotland (Cotton MS. Vesp. E. VIIL f. 
29. Harl. MSS. 1384, f. 79. 2120, ff. 3-7. Add. MSS. 17,537), 12mo, 
4to and folio. Embracing pen-and-ink drawings of arms, some very 
old fragments of miscellaneous MSS., " Irish, Scotish, and Yorkshire 
coates, with other outlandish armes," and a series of large coats of 
arms, carefully blazoned, with lists of Cadets on the opposite pages. 

6. Arms and Effigies of some of the Scottish Kings, with arms of 
many of the Scottish Nobility (Harl. MSS. 115), 4to. Quaint drawings 
of the Kings and Queens of Scotland, from Malcolm Can more to Mary, 
followed by the arms of the Nobility. 

7. Arms, Crests, and Mottos of Scottish Nobility (Add. MSS. 6298, 
f. 145-152), folio. The first portion is parchment, in French, followed 
by various miscellaneous pieces, including coats of arms, etc. 

8. Ordinary of Arms of Scottish Families, by Sir George Mackenzie 
(Harl. MSS. 3740), folio. The first part beautifully written, and the 
latter portion consisting of various MSS. in different hands. 

9. An Ordinary of Arms of Scotland (Harl. MSS. 4732), small 4to. 
The arms are described not drawn. At the end of the volume is a short 
MS. entitled, " Petit traitd des armories," with a few drawings of arms. 

10. Arms of the Sovereigns and Nobility of Scotland, 1585 (Harl. 
MSS. 6101), small 4to. Similar to the latter portion of No. 5. 


1. David Laing, Esq., Signet Library, Edinburgh. 
(1.) Blaison of Arms of the Nobility of Scotland, by Robert Miln, 
Herald Painter, 158 leaves folio. Formerly in the possession of Mr. 


Alexander Deuchar, Seal Engraver. The Arms are illuminated iu en- 
graved escutcheons, marked " Ro'- Miln, Sculp." 

(2.) The Publict Register of the Armes and Bearings in Scotland, 
1676, 250 pp. folio. From the collection of Mr. William Fraser, Seal 
Engraver, Edinburgh. Apparently a transcript of the Register in the 
Lyon Office. 

(3.) A Note of the Arms of the Nobility of Scotland, and of the 
whole Surnames in Scotland, in order of Alphabet, by James Pont, 
1624. 4to. 

(4.) Blazons of Scottish Arms, drawn in a rude style during the 
latter half of the sixteenth century the achievements of the Nobility 
being accompanied by Supporters with an Index of Names by Alex- 
ander Deuchar, 4to. Formerly in the possession of Sir Patrick 

(5.) Collection of armorial blazons from various sources, by Ethring- 
ton Martyu (Herald Painter), 1797. Small Svo. 

(6.) Heraldic collections by Mr. William Fraser, transcribed from 
early MSS., 7 vols. 4 to. 

2. Charles S. Plummer, Esq. of Middlestead, Swiderfand Hall, 


(1.) The Armorial Bearings of the Nobility and Gentry of Scotland, 
copied from Sir David Lindsay's sis., by W. Smiton, for Sir Walter 
Riddell of Glenriddel, folio. 

(2.) Public Register of the Arms and Bearings in Scotland, 2 vols. 
12mo, 1722. A Transcript of the original in the Lyon Office. 

(3.) Arms of the Kings and Nobility of Scotland, folio. 

(4.) The Arms of the Scots Peers, Illuminated, 4to. 

(5.) The Blazoning of the Arms belonging to the Gentlemen within 
the Kingdom of Scotland that have matriculate their bearings in the 
Lyon Register, 12 mo. 

(6.) The Illuminated Book of Blasons, 4 to. 

3. Tlie Rev. Ihnry Wellfsley, D.D., Principal of Xew Inn Hall, 


(1.) The Armes of the Crowue of Scotland and the Nobilitie of 
the same, with their Orestes, Supporters, and Mottos, pp. 60. The 


Quartered Coates of Scotland, pp. 01-66. The Single Coates of the 
Gentlemen of Scotland, pp. 67-78, folio. Sixteen Shields on each page, 
and the Arms neatly coloured, formerly in the possession of George 

(2.) Arms of the Kings of Scotland and their Wives, with full-length 
portraits neatly drawn and coloured, followed by the Arms of the No- 
bility, folio. Only a few leaves of the Kings are left. Formerly in 
the possession of George Chalmers. 

(3.) Arms of the Queens of Scotland (in lozenges), the Nobility, one 
to the page, and the Gentry, nine, to the page, neatly tricked and coloured, 
69 pp. folio. The following is inscribed on the first leaf : " hec surit 
arma Augustini Seneschalli, 1569," viz. a combination of the Stewart 
fess-checquy and the Royal Lion of Scotland, surmounted by a bend. 

(4.) Illuminated Anns of the Kings, Nobility, and Gentry of Scotland, 
folio, much mutilated. 

(5.) The Coats of the Lords of Scotland, with Crests and Supporters, 
elaborately illuminated in blank copperplate shields with mantlings and 
cartouches, richly bound, folio, 17th century. Apparently the second of 
two volumes, of which the first probably contained the bearings of the 
Sovereigns and Earls. 

(6.) Illuminated Arms of the Sovereigns and Nobility of Scotland, of 
which the last of the former is thus inscribed : " Marye marryed to 
'her second husband the Lorde Darley, sonne to the Erie Lenex of Scot 
land, and hath isshew James the 6 that now is King of Scotland," 4to. 

4. The Earl of Dalhousie, Brechin Castle, 

" MS. Genealogies, 1674-76," the date being assigned by the late 
Mr. Chalmers of Aldbar from internal evidence, 267 pp. 8vo, very 
neatly written and in excellent condition, containing 

(1.) " The Genealogies of the Nobility of Scotland, present and extinct, 
collected from History, and some other records and reports of people." 

(2.) The Badges of some of the Nobility of Scotland. (In addition 
to the Badge, which is usually the family crest, the supporters and 
motto are in most cases given.) 

(3.) Lists of Chancellors, Treasurers, and other important officials. 

(4.) Names of the Baronets, Barons, Knights, Lairds, and Chief 
Gentlemen in every Sheiiffdom of Scotland. 


5. John J. Chalmers, Esq. of Aldbar. 

" R. Milne's MS. History of Scots Lairds." 2 vols. 12mo. The 
first vol. contains 176 pp., the families being arranged in alphabetical 
order, commencing with " Aberbuthnot," and ending with " Spotswood." 
The MS. is interleaved with engraved shields, two on each page, with 
the arms in colours, probably of a later date. The following is in- 
scribed on the title-page of vol. i. : " Arms of a number of antient 
families in Scotland, with a short historical account annexed, by Mr. 
Robert Milne, Keeper of the Lyon Records for Scotland. The second 
volume is by D. Deuchar, Seal Engraver." A considerable portion of 
vol. ii. is blank. It contains a leaf of old MS. coarsely illuminated, be- 
sides a few other leaves with coloured shields. It is dated 1790, and 
the title states that the new, as well as the old, patents are inserted. 

Besides the MSS. specified in the preceding list, there are no doubt 
many others in private custody. The Duke of Sutherland is understood 
to have at least one fine heraldic MS. which was purchased at the sale 
of Mr. Deuchar's collection (see p. 281 supra); and along with many 
other curious and valuable papers, the late Mr. John Riddell, Advocate, 
possessed an Index of Blazons compiled by Robert Porteous, ' ; Snad- 
doun Herauld," in 1661, and purchased from his widow, about three 
years later, by Joseph Stacie, Ross Herald, to whom we have already 
referred. The value of Porteous' Index was considered by Mr. Riddell 
to be very much enhanced in consequence of the subsequent conflagra- 
tion of the then existing Lyon Records (see p. 7 1 supra). 

At p. vi. of the Preface to his System of Heraldry, Nisbet gives a 
list of " old manuscripts and illuminated books of blazons," of which 
several appear to have been in his own possession, and to which \i( 
frequently refers. Besides Workman, Pont, and Balfour, the list em 
braces the names of James Esplin, Marcbinont Herald, c. 1630, and 
George Ogilvie " a late herald with us." 

No. VI. 

WE have referred in the text (chap. iv. sect. 2) to one or two in- 
stances of armorial controversy in England. A case, which occurred in 


Scotland at the commencement of the fourteenth century, is possessed 
of considerable interest. In the year 1312, a contest having arisen 
between Hugh Harding, an Englishman, and William de Seintlowe, a 
Scotchman, as to which of them had the right to a particular Coat of 
Arms ; it was solemnly decided by duel at Perth, before King Robert 
the Bruce, as appears by the following letters patent : 

ROBERTUS DEI GRATIA REX SCOTI^E, Omnibus ad quos prsesentes 
literee pervenerint, salutem. Cum nos accepimus duellum apud nostram 
villain de Perthe, die confectionis prjesentium, inter Hugonem Harding, 
Anglicum, appellantem, de armis de goules tribus leporariis de auro cur- 
rentibus, colloree de B. et Willielmum de Seintlowe, Scoturn, appella- 
tum, eisdem armis sine differentia indutos : Quo quidern duello percusso. 
prsedictus Willielmus se finaliter reddidit devictnm, et prsedicto Hugoni 
remisit ac relaxavit, et omnino de se et haeredibus suis, in perpetuum, 
prsedicta arma, cum toto triumpho, honore, et victoria ore teuus, in 
audentia nostra. Quare nos, in solio nostro, tribunali regali sancti 
Patris, cum Maguatibus et Dominis, regni nostri personaliter sedentes, 
adjudicavimus et finaliter decretum dederimus, per prsesentes, quod prae- 
dictus Hugo Harding, et haeredes sui, de csetero in perpetuum habeant 
et teneant, gaudeant et portent pnedicta arma integraliter, absque cal- 
umpnia, perturbatione, contradictione, reclamatione, prsedicti Willielmi, 
seu haeredum suorum. In cujus rei testimonium, has literas nostras 
fieri fecimus patentes, apud dictam villain nostram de Perthe, secuudo 
die Aprilis, Anno regni nostri septimo aunoque Domini millesimo tre- 
centesimo et duodecimo. 1 

No. VII. 

WE have already given a specimen of an Early Scottish Patent of 
Arms (supra, p. 73), in favour of John, Lord Henries, in the year 1567. 
As examples of more recent Concessions, we shall here introduce (1.) 
a Grant by Sir Charles Erskino, Lyon King-of-Arms, about a hundred 
years later ; and (2.) a specimen of the style adopted at the present 
time. A very early English Grant of arms will be found at p. 315 of 

1 Nicola I rptonlde sfitJin milifnri, ptc. by Edoardus Bissams, Notre, p. 34. 


Lower's Curiosities of Heraldry, the date being 1376 ; and another, 
dated 1542, is printed at p. 171 of Dallaway's Heraldic. Enquiries. 
Several curious examples of Gifts and Bequests of Armorial Bearings 
are given by Edmondson in his Complete Body of Heraldry, vol. i. 
pp. 154-158. 

CHARLES ERSKINE of Cambo, Baronet, Lyon King-of-Arms. 

To all and sundrie whom it efFeirs. I Sir Charles Areskine of Cambo, 
Knight and Baronet, Lyon, King of Arms ; Considering, that by seve- 
ral Acts of Parliament, as well of Oar dread Soveraign Lord, Charles 
the Second, By .the Grace of God, King of /Scotland, England, France, 
and Ireland, Defender of the Faith ; as of His Majestie's Royal Pre- 
decessors : especially, by the twenty one Act of the third Session of this 
Current Parliament, I am impowered to visit the whole Arms and Bear- 
ings within this Kingdom, and to distinguish them, and inarticulate the 
same in my Books and Registers, and to give Extracts of all Arms, ex- 
pressing the Blazoning thereof, under my hand and seal of Office : And 
which Register, is by the fore-cited Act, ordained to be respected, as 
the true and unrepealable Rule of all Arms and Bearings in /Scotland, 
to remain with the Lyon's Office, as a publick Register of the Kingdom. 
Therefore, conform to the power given to me by His Sacred Majesty, 
and according to the tenors of the said Acts of Parliament ; I testifie 
and make known, that the arms of old belonging to the Royal Burgh 
of Aberdeen, and now coufirm'd by me, are inarticulate in my said 
publick Register, upon the day and date of thir presents : And are thus 
blazoned, viz. The said Royal Burgh of Aberdeen Gives for Ensigns 
Armorial, Gules, three Towers triple towered, within a double Tressure 
Countertiowred Argent : Supported by two Leopards propper : The 
Motto, in an escrol above, Bon-Accord (the Word Bon-Accord was 
given them by King Robert Bruce, for killing all the English in one 
night in their Town, their word being that night Bon-Accord}. And 
upon the Reverse of the Seal of the said Burgh is insculped, in a Field 
Azure, a Temple Argent, Saint Michael standing in the porch mitered 
and vested propper, with his Dexter hand lifted up to Heaven, praying 
over three children in a boyling Caldron of the first, and holding in the 
Sinister a Crosier, Or. Which Arms above-blazoned, I hereby declare 
to have been, and to be, the true and unrepealable Signs Armorial of 

o 1 2 APPENDIX. 

the Burgh Royal above-named. Tn testimony whereof, I have sub- 
scrib'd this Extract with my hand ; and have cans' d append my Seal of 
Office thereto. 

Given at Edinburgh, the twenty fifth day of February, and of 
Our said Soveraign Lord's Reign, the twenty sixth Year, 1674. 


2. PATENT of ARMS by THOMAS-ROBERT, Earl of Kinnoull, Lord- 
Lyon King of Arms, in favour of Sir JAMES CAMPBELL of 
Strathcathro, Knight. 

To All and Sundry whom these presents do or may concern, We 
Thomas Robert, Earl of Kinnoull, etc., Lord Lyon King of Arms, send 
Greeting : Whereas Sir James Campbell of Stracathro, in the county of 
Forfar, Knight, hath by a Petition, of date the twenty-third day of 
August last ; Represented unto us, That the Petitioner was the second 
son of James Campbell by Helen his Wife, daughter of John Forrester, 
That the Petitioner was desirous of bearing and using such Arms as 
might be indicative of his Name and station in life, And prayed for 
Our licence and authority accordingly. Know ye therefore that We 
have devised and do by these presents Assign, Ratify, and Confirm unto 
the said Sir James Campbell, Knight, and his Descendants, to bear and 
use in all time coming, with due and proper differences, according to the 
Laws of Arms, the following Ensigns- Armorial, as depicted upon the 
margin hereof, and Matriculated of even date with these presents in Our 
Public Register of all Arms and Bearings in Scotland, viz. : Gyronuy 
of eight Or and Sable, within a Bordure ingrailed Azure ; On a Canton 
Argent a Galley with her sail furled up, flagged, and her oars in action 
of the second, and upon a Chief of the fourth, three Hunting horns also 
of the second, viroled of the first and stringed Gules, for maternal dif- 
ference. Above the shield is placed a Helmet befitting his Degree with 
a Mantling Gules, doubled Argent, and upon a Wreath of his Liveries is 
set for Crest a Boar's head, erased, proper, and in an Escroll over the 
same this Motto " Ne obliviscaris." In testimony whereof these pre- 
sents are subscribed by James Tytler of Woodhouselee, Esquire, our 
Depute, and the Seal of Our Office is appended hereunto, at Edinburgh, 
the second day of September, in the year of our Lord One thousand 
eight hundred and and fifty-nine. 




1. 1527, May 10. (Jac. v.) 

PROTESTATION anent the creatioun of ROBERT BERTOUN sone to 
Robert Bertoun of Ovirberntouu to be of the surname of MOW- 

Jhone logane of lestalrig, gilbert Wauchop of nudry, and 

askit documentis that our souerane lord, be the auise and auctoritie 
of parliament, creatit and Nainyt Robert bertoun, sone to Robert ber- 
toun of ovirberntoun, to be of the surname of mowbrayis, and will 
that lie bruke the said surname in tyme to cum, and he to be callit 
mowbray commonly amangis all his liegis, efter the forme and tenor of 
the appunctuament maid betuix vmquhile . . . mowbray of bern- 
bowgall and the said Robert bertoun eldar. becaus the samyn hes bene 
ane auld honorable hous and done our souerane lordis predecessoris 
gud seruice in ther weris and vtherwais. And the said robert bertoun 
zongar Is to mary . . . mowbray, the dochtir and air of the said . . . 
mowbray, and will not that the said hous pas fra the surname. 

RATIFICATION of ane appoinctment betuix urnquhile JON MOW- 
BRAY of Bernbougall and ROBERT BERTOUN of Utherberntoun. 
Our Souerane lord, with auise and consent of the thre estatis of par- 
liament, vnderstanding that, be the appoinctment maid betwix vmquhile 
Jon mowbray of bernbougall and Robert bertoun of vtherberntoun for 
marage betuix Robert his sone and . . . moubray, dochtir and air 
to the said Jone, that the said Robert suld be callit mowbray and haue 
and beir that surnem. Herfor ordanis, Ratifiis, and apprevit the said. 

2. 1581, c. 46. (Jac. vi.) 

ANENT the changeing of the surenaine of WILLIAME MAXWELL ap- 

perand of lanimingtoun In the surename of BAILLIE. 

FORSAMEKILL as anent the supplicatioun gewin in be Johnne lord 

hereis, williame baillie of lammingtoun, and Eduard maxwell sone to the 

said lord, Makand mentioun That quhare for fulfilling of an pairt of the 

contract of manage maid betuix the said lord and his said sone one that 

2 K 


ane pairt, and the said laird of lammingtoun and margaret baillie his 
lauchfull dochter one the vther pairt, for mariage contractit and schortlie 
thairefter solempnizat betuix the said Eduard and the said margaret : 
It being convenit that the saidis Edwarde sould ressaue the surename of 
baillie and armes of the hous of lammingtoun, In respect of the glide 
cledis and benefeitis he was to ressaue of the said mariage : Newirthe- 
les wpoun considerationes mowing the said parteis, It is condiscendit 
and aggreit, with aduise of freindis one ather pairt, That it salbe dis- 
pensit with the said Edwardis ressawing of the said Surename of baillie 
for ane certane space to cum, Prowyding that williame maxwell, eldest 
lauchfull sone gottin betuix the said Eduarde and the said margaret, 
Sail instantlie ressaue the said surnename of baillie and armes of the 
said hous of lammingtoun, and ane act and statute to be maid in this pre- 
sent parliament thairwpoun. THAIRFOKE, Oure said souerane lord, 
with aduise and consent of the thrie estatis of this present parliament, 
and of consent of the saidis Johnne lord hereis, williame baillie of lam- 
mingtoun, and the said Eduard maxwell, HES STATUTE AND ORDANIT 
that the said williame baillie, eldest lauchfull sone and apperand air 
gottin betuix the saidis Eduarde and margaret, hes willinglie past fra 
his surnename of maxwell, Ressauit and acceptit in place thairof the 
said surename of baillie, And armes of the said hous of lammingtoun. 
And thairfore decernis and Ordanis him now to be callit in all tymes 
cumming williame baillie, And all his posteritie thaireftir- to be callit 
baillies of thair surename, And newir to revoke the samyn nor to res- 
saue ony vther surename heireftir : And Ordanes lettres of publica- 
tioun to be direct heirvpon, gif neid beis, in forme as efferis. 

3. ACT in favours of WILLIAM PYET his KINSMEN and RELA- 

Unto his Grace Her Majesty's high Commissioner, and Right Hon- 
ourable the Estates of Parliament. 

The Petition of William Pyet for himself, and in name and behalf 
of his other Kinsmen and Relations of the Nickname of Pyet, 
Humbly sheweth, 

That your Petitioners Predicessors were of the Sirname of Graham, 
and through the unhappy Difference that in the last Age did frequently 
fall out betwixt Clanns ; They, by their Neighbours, were forced from 
their Native Residence and obliged to cover themselves under the Sir- 


name of Pyet. And We having by certain Tradition the True Account 
of Our Origine and Sirname of Graham : And We being Earnestly De- 
sirous to be Restored, and make Use of the same in all Time Coming ; 
which We cannot do, having Trade both at Home and Abroad, without 
a Publick Act, whereby the Traders with Us may be Certiorat. 

May it therefore please Your Grace and Lordships to allow Us to 
Assume and Use Our Ancient Sirname of Graham ; and to Dis- 
charge the Ignominious Nick-name of Pyet, in all time coming. 
And Your Petitioners shall ever pray. 

Edinb. 7 March 1707. 

Her Majesties high Commissioner and the Estates of Parliament 
haveing heard this petitione, They grant the desire thereof and alloues 
the petitioners to assume and use their antient surname of Graham, and 
discharges the nickname of Pyet in all tyme comeing. 

SE AFIELD Can cellar. I P.D.P. 

No. IX. 


1 . ORDINARY FORM of ANNOUNCEMENT relative to Assumption of 
Additional Surname and Arms, involving Registration at the 
English College of Arms. 

WHITEHALL, January 5, 1852. 

The Queen has been pleased to grant unto William Heriot-Maitland- 
Dougall (heretofore William Heriot-Maitland), of Scotscraig, in the 
County of Fife, Esquire, a Commander in the Royal Navy, and to Eliza- 
beth Kinnear, his Wife, eldest of the three daughters and co-heirs of 
William Stark Dougall, late of Scotscraig aforesaid, Esquire, deceased, 
Her Royal licence and authority that they may, in compliance with an 
obligation contained. in a certain deed of agreement, bearing date the 1st 
day of November 1851, continue to use the Surname of Dougall, in ad- 
dition to and after that of Maitland, that he, the said William Heriot- 
Maitland-Dougall, may bear the arms of Dougall of Scotscraig, quarterly 


with those of Maitland, and that such surname and arms may in like 
manner be taken, borne, and used by the issue of their marriage ; such 
arms being first duly exemplified according to the laws of arms, and re- 
corded in the Herald's College, otherwise the said royal licence and per- 
mission to be void and of none effect : 

And also to command that the said royal concession and declaration 
be registered in Her Majesty's College of Arms. 


Registration at the Office of Ulster King of Arms, Dublin. 


The Queen has been graciously pleased to grant to William Edward 
Armstrong . . . Her royal licence and authority, bearing date at St. 
James's,18th May 1858, that (out of grateful and affectionate respect to 
the memory, and in compliance with the expressed desire of his maternal 
uncle, the late John MacDonnell, ... to whose landed property 
he has succeeded) he and his issue may take and henceforth use the 
surname of MacDonnell, in addition to and after that of Armstrong, and 
also bear the arms of MacDonnell quarterly with those of Armstrong : 

Provided that Her Majesty's royal concession and declaration be re- 
corded in the Office of Ulster King of Arms in Ireland, which has been 
done accordingly. 


3. ENTIRE CHANGE of SURNAME without any reference to Arms. 

WHITEHALL, August 21, 1860. 

The Queen has been pleased to grant unto Joseph Jeffrey, of Shell- 
acres, in the parish of Norham, in the County of Northumberland, 
Gentleman, son of Joseph Jeffrey, late of Amble, in the parish of Wark- 
worth, in the said county of Northumberland, Farmer, the younger 
brother of William Fenwick (formerly William Jeffrey), late of Sturton 
Grange, South Side, in the parish of Warkworth aforesaid, Esquire, both 
deceased, Her Royal licence and authority that he and his issue may, in 
compliance with a proviso contained in the last will and testament of 
his paternal uncle, the said William Fenwick, take and henceforth use 
the surname of Fenwick, in lieu and instead of that of Jeffrey : 

And to command that the said Royal concession and declaration be 
recorded in Her Majesty's College of Arms, otherwise to be void and of 
none effect. 


As a general rule, Peers are entered under their Surnames, thus : Dougla.s, Earl of Morton. 

ABANDONMENT of paternal arms, 116, 117. 

" Abbot," Scott's, 249. 

Abbott, Chief-Justice, on change of name, 


Aberdeen, Arms of, 451, 511. 
Abernethy, Arms of, 94. 

Seal of Alexander, 196, 267. 

Abeyance of Peerages in England, 338. 
Abney-Hastings vice Clifton, 405. 
Abuses in Lyon Office, 66, 158, 171. 
in English and French Colleges of 

Arms, 68. 

Accessory coats of twelfth century, 194. 
Accidental lines as differences 011 early 

seals, 198. 

forms, 98. 

Accollees shields, 200 ; rare in Scotland, ib. 
Achaius, King of Scotland, 425. 
Acquet (Halket), 457. 
Act of Parliament confirming bore-brief, 


of 1592, c. 125,43, 493 ; analysis of, 51. 

of 1662, c. 53, 44, 495. 

of 1663, c. 15, 44, 498. 

of 1672, c. 21, 44, 457, 498 ; analysis 

of, 51. 
Acts of Parliament relative to the Lyon 

King-of-Arnis, 43-5, 493. 
English, for change of name and 

arms, 400, 404, 406. 

of the Scottish Parliament authoriz- 
ing change of surname, 408, 421, 513. 
of Sederunt authorizing change of 

surname, 409. 

Actions, Commemoration of noble, 111. 
Adam and Eve, Spade and spindle of, 208. 
Adaptability of Heraldry, 154. 
Additaments of honour of Baronets, 305. 
" Additions," Armorial, 283. 
Additional crest and motto, Grant of, 133. 

figures, Permanent, 87, 91. 

Adoption, Arms of, 358, 364, 367. 
Adumbrated arms, 368. 

Advertisements, Heraldic, 178. 
Advocates, Arms of the Faculty of, 133. 

Changes of name by, 409. 

Library, Heraldic MSS. in, 281, 500. 

Motto of Faculty of, 247. 

Affixed surnames, 395. 
Affronte, 460. 

Agincourt, Battle of, 23, 315. 
Agitation, Armorial see Grievance. 
Agnation v. Assumption, 422. 
Agnew of Lochnaw, 309. 
Sir Andrew, on heraldry and genea- 
logy, 15. . 

Alaunt or wolf-dog, 271. 
Albany Herald, 37. 
" Albert the Good," 471. . 
Alenyon, Family of, 89. 
Alexander n., Seal of, 192, 425. 

in., Seal of, 223 ; 243. 

Alienation of arms, 367-369. 

Allegorical figures, 11. 

Alliances, Commemoration of, 1 10. 

between France and Scotland, 456. 

Allusive arms, 145. 
mottos, 250. 

Altar tombs, Crests on, 214. 
Alterations in royal arms see Royal Anns. 
Altered figures on seals, 191. . 
Amazon women, 326. 
Amended matriculations, 133. 
America, Changes of name in, 389. 
Notions of Heraldry in, 182. 

Amputation of surnames, 387. 
Analogies, Heraldic, 445, 454, 456. 
Analysis of the Acts 1592, c. 125 ; 1672, 
c. 21,51. 

of blood, 395. 

Ancestry, Fictitious, 187. 
Ancient armorial bearings, 18. 

blazon, Simplicity of, 152. 

usage, Right to supporters by, 286, 

293, 295, 297. 
Anderson, Arms of, 55. 



Anderson, William, Marchmon Herald and 
Lyon-Clerk Depute, 78- 

Anderson-.BZmY, 410. 

Anderson's " Diplomata Scotiae," 429. 

Andrews, Grant of crest to Thomas, 217. 

Angels as supporters, 264, 265, 266. 

Angus-shire families, Arms of, 115. 

Angus, Seal of Malcolm, Earl of, 1 92. 

Animals as supporters, 264. 

heads as crests, 222, 225. 

Animate charges, Position of, in shields, 
460 ; on banners, 461. 

Anjou, Family of, 89. 

War-cry of the Dukes of, 249. 

Annandale families, Arms of, 114. 

Anne (Queen), Union in her reign, 429. 

Anne of Bretagne, Cordeliere attributed to, 

Annulet as a mark of cadency, 87. 

Annulets of Eglinton, 106. 

Anomalies, Heraldic, 372. 

Anstis on mottos, etc., 241 ; on the origin 
of supporters, 261. 

Anstrude (Anstruther), 457. 

Anstruther of that Ilk, 350. 

of Balcaskie, 309. 

" Antiquaries of Scotland, Proceedings of 
the," 115, 203, 207, 210, 211, 233, 273. 

Antique or eastern crown, 232. 

Antrobus, Supporters of, 310. 

Applications for arms, Form of procedure 
in, 125, 126. 

Appropriate escutcheons, 147. 

Arbutnnot of Findourie, 93. 

Arc, Joan of, 326. 

" Archseologia," 299, 405 

"Archaeological Journal," 120, 202, 205. 

Archaeological Institute Museum " Cata- 
logue," 243. 

Archer see Laurence. 

Architectural Institute " Transactions," 

Architecture and heraldry, 9, 135, 265, 
282, 472. 

Arden of Wilmcote, 150. 

Aristocracy, Humble origin of the, 18. 

Aristotle on mispronounced names, 387. 

Armed men as supporters, 264. 

Armorial bearings, Definition of, 1 ; origin 
of, 2. 

Armorial controversy at Perth, 509. 

patents, 510. 

Armory, Elements of, on seals, 191. 

Arms a matter of legal right, 19. 

assumption and change of, 375 et seq. 

Arms and name clause in entails, 359 et seq. 

Arms and name, Position of, 363. 

" Arms, crests, and monograms," collec- 
tions of, 472. 

Arms, Various modes of marshalling, 395 

et seq. 

Armstrong- MacDonnell, 516. 
Arnot, Hugo, on the Lyon Office, 66, 71. 
Arran, Ensigns of, 348. 
Art, Heraldry a branch of, 440. 

Seals illustrative of, 189. 

Arundel, House of, 341. 

Seal of Richard, Earl of, 230. 

Ashmole's " Order of the Garter," 279. 
Association, Tenacity of heraldic, 5. 
Assumption, Arms of, 385. 
Assumption of arms, Irregular, 80, 81, 87, 

127, 174, 177, 180-183, 185; in England, 

176, 177 ; Regulated, 23. 
Assumption of surnames and arms, 375 et 

seq. ; motives for, 379 et seq. ; practice 

reprehended, 379 ; various modes of, 

" Athenaeum," Review of Baronets' claims 

in the, 300-303. 
Athol, Walter, Earl of, 459. 
Robert, Master of, 459. 

Attorneys, Change of name by, 410. 
Auchinleck of that Ilk, 116. 
of Balmanno, 116. 

Aunoy, Seal of Thomas De, 192, 195. 
Ave Marias of Spanish Heraldry, 454. 
Ayrshire families, Arms of, 114. 

BACON of Redgrave, 309. 

Badge or cognizance, 252 et seq.; some- 
times confounded with the device, 254 ; 
confounded with the crest by Shak- 
speare, 252 ; usually the same as the 
crest in Scotland, 253 ; object of, 255 ; 
of Nova Scotia Baronets, 306. 

Badges, Highland, 259. 

Bailey on Gentlemen, 123. 

Baillie of Jerviswoode and Mellerstain, 405. 

of Lamington, 408 ; motto of, 250. 

vice Maxwell, 408, 513. 

of Polkemmet, 310. 

Baillie see Dundas. 

Baillie-Hamilton, Earl of Haddington, 320. 

Baird, Sir James Gardiner, 314. 

Balfour, Family of, 297. 

of Cariston, 113. 

of Denmiln, 309- 

of Denmiln and Kinnaird, Sir James, 

483 ; MSS. of, 281 ; heraldic and anti- 
quarian tracts, 28, 446. 

Baliol, John, 331. 

Bank of Scotland, 133,216. 

Bankton (Lord) on Kings-of-Arms, 24. 

Banners, Heraldry of, 472. 

Position of animals on, 461. 

Banner-staffs, Supported, 271. 



Bannerets entitled to supporters, 289. 
Banns, Undue publication of, in England, 

418-420 ; in Scotland, 419. 
Baptismal names, 424. 
Baron's " L'Art Heraldique," 278. 
Barbour, Surname of, 382. 
Barclay of Balvaird, 103. 

ofTowie, 295. 

" Barklei," House of, 342. 

Barlow v. Bateman, 400, 421. 

Barnet, Battle of, 255. 

Baron and Femme, 205, 314. 

Barons (lesser), 54 ; entitled to supporters, 

286, 292 ; their ancient importance, 293, 


Baronet, Female, 328. 
Baronets, 310; not entitled to supporters, 


coronet of, 300 ; helmet of, 307. 

distinctive badge of, 305, 306. 

fees on creation of, 161, 162. 

pretensions of, 300 et seq. 

proportion of, bearing supporters, 308. 

Scottish, not entitled to supporters, 

288, 307. 
supporters irregularly granted to, 


their right to supporters ? 303 et seq. 

fraudulent pretensions of several, 304. 

terms of their patents, 304, 305. 

Barred helmet, the mark of the peerage, 


Barren honours of Heraldry, 355, 374. 
Barrington's " Lectures on Heraldry," 6. 
Barton (or Mowbray), Seal of Robert, 207. 
" Bastard of Arran," 464. 
Bastard see Illegitimate. 
Bastard- bar see Baton. 
Bath King-of-Arms, 26. 
Bath, Knights of, entitled to supporters, 

287, 299. 

Baton or bastard-bar, 462 ; its varied posi- 
tion, 463. 
couped and sinister in modern times, 


cancellation of, 463. 

Bayning, Signature of Lord, 458. 
Bear and Ragged Staff, 253. 
Bearers see Supporters. 
Beauchamp, 341, 342. 

badge, 253. 

Signature of Lord, 458. 

Beaufort, Duke of, 463. 

family and unicorn, 274. 

Joan, Queen of James i., Seal of, 208. 

Signet of, 209. 

John de, 462, 465. 

portcullis, 256. 

Stall-plate of John, 299. 

Becket, Murder of Thomas a, 251. 

Bedford family, Monument of the, 266. 

Belcombe vice Bullock, 386. 

~Be\\-Madachlan, 410. 

Bell, Professor, on deeds of entail, 359. 

on heirs-portioners, 339. 

Bellenden, Lord, 451. 

Seal of James, Lord, 245. 

Belshes vice De Belassize, 387. 

Belshes of Invermay, Achievement of, 277. 

Bend and Bendlet, 94 ; on early seals, 196 ; 
dexter, 464; on Scottish seals of six- 
teenth century, ib. ; sinister, ib. 

Benholme, Lord, 458.- 

Berkeley Peerage, 388. 

Bertoun see Mowbray. 

Bethune of Balfour, 131. 

Bethune of Kilconquhar, 397. 

Bezants, 455 ; origin of, ib. 

in arms of Bank of Scotland, 216. 

in arms of Pitt, 135. 

Bibles, Royal Arms in Scottish, 444. 

Bigland on parochial registers, 8. 

" Bigiarres d'Angleterre," 455. 

Bigod, Seal of Roger, 199. 

Billings' "Baronial and Ecclesiastical An- 
tiquities of Scotland," 282. 

Billingshurst, Rex v., 419. 

Binning of that Ilk, 112. 

of Easter-Binning, 112. 

Binning-Home of Argaty, 397. 

Birth-brieves, 82 see Bore-brieve. 

Birth-brieve fees, 160. 

Biset, Seal of Elizabeth, 199. 

Blackstone on personal chattels, 340. 

on the legal succession, 332. 

on private Acts of Parliament, 335. 

" Black Book of Taymouth," 260. 

Black Prince, Natural son of, 462. 

Blair surname, Assumption of, 410. 

chieftainship, 118. 

in France, 456. 

of Balthayock, 118. 

of Blair, 79, 118. 

Blazon, Derivation of the term, 3. 

Blazons, Books of, 281. 

Blood, Comparative analysis of, 395. 

Red, white, and blue, 394. 

Whole and half, 346, 347, 348. 

Bloody-hand of Ulster, 300. 
Blount, Sir Michael, 8. 
of Soddington, 309. 

Blounts of Buckinghamshire, 382. 
Blue blood, 394. 
" Bluid and suet," 394. 
Boar's head a feudal dish, 225. 
Boars' heads of Gordon, 153. 
Bohun, Earl of Hereford, Humphrey De, 



"Boke of St. Albans," 368. 

Bolles, Lady Mary, 328. 

Bonny, Battle of, 386. 

Bontein of Milldovan, Crest of, 137. 

Books, Heraldry of, 472. 

Bordure on early seals, 196. 

as a mark of difference, 91, 121. 

sometimes carried as a principal 

figure, 91. 

r under accidental forms, 93. 

uncharged, 92. 

compony, 465-467 ; seal example of, 


not always a mark of bastardy, 465. 

a mark of cadency for lawful children 

in France, ib. 

honourable of old in Scotland, 466. 

Bore-brieve, Scottish, 467. 

not of high authority, ib. 

Examples of, 467-468. 

Borthwick of Crookston, 95. 

Supporters of Lord, 266. 

Bosco, Seal of widow of Andrew de, 199. 
Boswell, Robert, 489. 

Lord Auchinleck, 326. 

Boswell's "Life of Johnson," 3, 332. 
Botreaux, Seal of William Lord, 261. 

Arms of, 262. 

Botteville family, 379- 

Boutell, Rev. Charles, his Manual of 

Heraldry, 471-472. 
Bower Wood, Case of, 418. 
Bowden Church, Arms at, 229. 
Boyd of Kilmarnock, Thomas, 340. 
Boyds and Stewarts, Common origin of 

the, 1 17. 

Boyle, Lord President, 354. 
Boyle motto, 252. 
" Bozzy" on male and female succession, 

326, 332 ; on the Douglas cause, 393. 
Branxholme, 351. 

Brass of Regent Moray, Monumental, 233. 
Brechin, Armorial petition by the Magis- 
trates of, 434. 

. Seal of David de, 1 99. 

" Brieve of Inquest" abolished, 304. 
Brisbane of Bishoptown, 115. 
Brisures, Etymology of the term, 86. 
" Britannia rules the waves," 446. 
British Museum, Heraldic MSS. in, 281, 


worthies, Uuheraldic coats of, 138. 

Brodie of that Ilk, Alexander, 487. 

Thomas, 489. 

Brooches, Heraldry of, 472. 

Broun, 386. 

Brown, Surname of, 378. 

Arms of Sir George, 148. 

Browne, Lord Oranmore, 362, 393. 

Bruce arms, 153 ; motto, 249 

of Airth, 295 ; supporters of, 263. 

Lord of Annandale, Seal of Robert, 

of Balcaskie, 112. 

Earl of Carrick, Seal of Robert, 267. 

Earl of Elgin, Supporters of, 263. 

House of, 85. 

of Rennet, 79. 

King Robert, 331 ; Seal of, 223 ; 

attacked by a bull, 384. 
Bryan-Jones, 410. 
Bryan and Toy, Case of, 419. 
Brydal's " Jus imaginis apud Anglos," 2. 
Brydson's " View of Heraldry " 12,226, 


The bold, 350. 

dukedom, Patent of, 328. 

Buchan, Earldom of, 348 ; garbs, 105. 
Buchan-Hepburn of Smeaton, 310. 
Buchanan badge, 259. 

and Buchan, 402. 

of that ilk, 451. 

Buchanans, Slogan of the, 248. 
Buckingham in lieu of Tinker, 389. 
Buckle of Pelham, 257. 
Buckles of Leslie, 128. 
Bug see Howard. 
Bugle-horns, Position of, 460. 
Bullock, Surname of, 386. 
Bunkle of that Ilk, 201. 
Burgoyne of Sutton Park, 309. 
Burgundy, Limitation of crests in, 216. 
Natural sons of the Duke of, 462. 

Seal of Margaret, Duchess of, 262. 

Seal of Philip Duke of, 203. 

Burke's, Sir J. B., " Vicissitudes of Fami- 
lies," 173. 

' Patrician," 308. 

' Landed Gentry," 383. 

Burnell and Morley controversy, 120. 
Burnes, Arms of Dr. James, 149. 
Burns, Arms of Robert, 148- 
Burnet of Balleladies, 467. 
- - of Barns, 118 ; Motto of, 251. 

chieftainship, 118. 

crest and motto, the invention of 

Queen Mary, 118. 

of Leys, 118 ; Motto of, 251. 

Sir Thomas, 317. 

Seal of Sir Richard, 191. 

Burnett, George, 490. 
Burton-upon-Trent, Rex v., 419. 
Burton's "History of Leicestershire," 8. 
Bute Pursuivant, 38. 
Butler of Garryhundon, 309. 
Seal of John, 267. 

Buttresses as supporters, 262. 
Byron, Seal of Sir John de, 243. 



CABERFAE of the Mackenzies, 103. 

Cabmen's heraldry, 181. 

Cadency, Marks of, under armorial Acts, 
56, 86 et seq. 

not the same as Differences, 89. 

Cadets of families, their armorial differ- 
ences, 56, 85 et seq. 

Caerlaverock, Roll of, 281. 

Castle, 282. 

Caithness, Seal of John, Earl of, 448. 

Callander of Craigforth, 397. 

Callard gyronny, 453. 

Caltraps of the Drummonds, 259, 276. 

Cambridge Antiquarian Society's publica- 
tions, 135. 

Camden, Appropriate armorial grants by, 
, 135. 

on change of surnames, 386, 411. 

on marks of difference, 86. 

his "Remaines," 369, 379, 411. 

Camel supporting a shield, 271. 

Cameo see Seal. 

Cameron badge, 259. 

of Fassilern (mural crown), 232. 

of Lochiel, 79, 143. 

Pictorial coat of, 143. 

Surname of, 377. 

Campbell badge, 259. 
Marquis of Breadalbane, 105, 453. 

Sir Archibald, 140. 

of Barcaldine, 310. 

(Castle) vice Gloume, 409. 

Duke of Argyll, 96, 348, 453 ; en- 
tail of, 366. 

Third and Fifth Earls of Argyll, seals 

of Colin and Archibald, 272, 237. 

Sir Colin, 392. 

of Corvorane, Seal of Dougal, 278. 

of Craignish, 146, 278. 

gyronny, 452. 

of Lawers, Sir James, 485. 

Earl of Loudon, 96, 349. 

vice M'Liver, 392. 

Military coat of, 143. 

of Shawfield, 470. 

of Stracathro, Patent of Arms to Sir 

James, 512. 

surname, Assumption of, 384, 391, 


Surname of, 377, 378. 

Campbell see Hooke-Campbell. 

Campbell-Davys, 392. 

CampbfU-Swinton of Kimmerghame, 397. 

Camperdown see Duncan. 

Cant, 6. 

Canteloup, Seal of Nicholas de, 211. 

Canting Mottos, 249. 

Canton, Arms of illegitimate children in a, 

Caparisons, Position of Animals on, 461. 
Capricious change of surname, 386, 424. 
Carberry, Lord, 459. 
Carnegie of Kinnaird, Seal of Sir David, 


Carnegie, Lord Northesk, 232. 
Carrick Pursuivant, 38- 
Seal of Duncan, Earl of, 191. 

Seal of John, Earl of, 195. 

Carringtons of Warwickshire, 382. 
Carstairs of Kilconquhar, 128. 
Carstares, Principal, 486. 
Cartouch, or false shield, 463. 
Castile and Leon, King of, 205. 
Cathcarl, Achievement of the Master of, 


Cathcart of Carbiston, Motto of, 252. 
Cavendish, Stags' heads of, 152 ; motto of, 


Cavers-Carre burial vault, 229. 
Cecil, 14. 

Celestial figures, 141. 
Centre additional figure, 95. 
Chalmer vice Muir, 409. 
Chalmers, George, on King Achaius, 425. 

his "Caledonia," 28, 194. 

John J., of Aldbar, Heraldic MS. of, 


Seals of William and Thomas, 197, 


Chamberlain see Matthews. 

Chambers, Robert, on arms of Robert 
Burns, 149; on arms of Shakspeare, 150 ; 
on the Scottish Parliament's patronage 
of literature, 75 ; on Shaw of Bargarran, 
115 ; on national arms, 428 ; on ancient 
architecture of Edinburgh, 241. 

Chancery, Enrolment of change of name 
in, 398, 423. 

Chancery, Sheriff of, 304. 

Change of crest, 122. 

Change of name and arms, 375 et seq. ; 
motives for, 379 et seq. ; practice repre- 
hended, 379 ; strictness of former pro- 
cedure in Scotland, 408- 

Change of name see Surname. 

Chapeau, 230. 

Chapeaux, Indiscriminate grants of, in 
England, 231. 

Present regulations regarding, 232. 

Characteristic quality of surnames, 414. 

Charlemagne's league with Scotland, 425. 

Charles i., Warrant by, relative to Sir 
James Balfour's appointment to the office 
of Lyon, 484. 

Charles n., Illegitimate descendants of, 

Cbarteris, Countess of Wemyss, Margaret, 



Charteris, Earl of Wernyss, 451. 

Seals of David, William, and John, 


Charters, Adoption by John, 381. 
Chassanceus on arms of adoption, 367. 

on right to supporters, 298. 

Chastillion, De, Earl of St. Paul, 203. 
Chatelherault, Seals of Duke and Duchess 

of, 233. 
Seal of Margaret, Duchess of, 206, 


Chattan, The Clan, 330. 
Chattels in England, 340. 
Chatto, Family of, 101. 
Chaucer quoted, 217, 257 ; Arms of, 98. 
Chccquy Wreath, 228. 
Checquy see Fess. 

Chein, Lords of Inverugie, Seals of Regin- 
ald (father and son), 197. 

Seal of Widow of Reginald le, 201. 

Cherubim as supporters, 266. 
Chess-piece, Dimidiated arms on ancient, 


Chester, Earls of, 114. 
Chevron as a mark of difference, 91. 
sometimes carried as a principal 

figure, 91. 

on early seals, 196. 

uncharged, 92. 

under accidental forms, 93. 

Chevronel in English heraldry, 454. 
Chief and saltire of Bruce, 114, 153. 
Chiefs of families, their unabated arms, 56. 

entitled to supporters, 287, 293, 317. 

without followers, 318. 

Chieftainships, Disputed, 118. 
" Child of the family," 390. 
Chinese nobility, White b